DENTAL clinics run by East Cheshire NHS Trust have been awarded an important accreditation from the country’s leading mouth cancer charity.

One of the clinics is at the Victoria infirmary at Northwich, which has achieved full membership of the Mouth Cancer Foundation’s newly-launched Mouth Cancer Screening Accredidation Scheme.

The scheme promotes the importance of checking for signs of mouth cancer, and raises awareness among patients and dental practices.

To achieve the accreditation staff from the trust’s dental services branch undertook specific training and attended local events to raise public awareness around the early signs of mouth cancer.

In the UK almost 8,000 people are diagnosed with mouth cancer every year, and it affects more men than women.

Dr Vinod Joshi, founder of the Mouth Cancer Foundation, said: “We are pleased to welcome East Cheshire NHS Trust as a full member of our Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Scheme.

“The scheme helps dentists and everyone working in a dental practice to know what they are looking for and how to check and refer patients. This will allow head and neck cancers to be caught earlier.

“Head and neck cancers are particularly vicious and debilitating when detected late. With earlier detection lives are saved and costs on the NHS will reduce dramatically.”