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Dental mythbuster 22: CCTV in dental practices

  • Organisations we regulate

CCTV can enhance safety and security, but must be used appropriately and meet data security requirements.

We will consider data protection and CCTV in a dental practice when we review the well-led key question. This relates to:

Types of recording

Overt recording

This is done with obvious cameras. Public areas that could be under surveillance include the waiting room, reception area or car park. Cameras should not record personal areas such as toilets.

Private areas would be the dental treatment room. Equipment should not be used to record private conversations in the dental treatment room.

It must be clear to patients when they enter a public area under surveillance that recording is taking place. Signage must:

  • be clear and prominent
  • explain, the purpose of recording
  • include the name and contact details of those operating the surveillance scheme.

Covert recording

This is where recording is done without the explicit knowledge of the subjects. This would not normally be undertaken in a dental practice.

Data protection

If practices are using CCTV equipment, it is essential they have governance arrangements in place that satisfy the Data Protection Act 2018.

Practices should follow good practice described ‘In the picture: A data protection code for surveillance cameras and personal information’ (Information Commissioner’s Office): The British Dental Association has also published advice on data protection issues including CCTV.

Last updated:
26 September 2018