Alison Cane

Outreach and Nurse Development Manager

On a day to day basis I am responsible for delivering operational management, service planning and development for a number of innovative Smile Together programmes including clinical outreach, dental nurse apprentices/trainees and general dental nurse training. I also currently manage our practice in Penzance and provide remote support for our Truro and Isles of Scilly teams.

In my role I am closely involved with supporting service improvement within clinically-focussed projects right across our business, generally finding new and better ways of delivering patient care and reaching out to support local community initiatives such as Cornwall Health for Homeless.  I lead and plan use of our mobile dental unit, ensuring the vehicle is always maintained and ready for service delivery for projects such as Smiles at Sea and I lead our Smarter Smiles oral health promotion team.

I love problem solving and would say this is the most fun aspect of my role. I also enjoy the operational side of what I do as, although we are really busy and there is so much to do, no two days are the same.

However, this also means communication is one of the biggest challenges in my role. It’s hard to make sure you keep everyone in the loop with any changes and developments when you’re head down delivering what’s needed – I try my best but it’s not always possible!

I began my career in dentistry at the age of 16 as a trainee dental nurse at a small dental practice in Penzance, and I stayed there for the next 18 years! Having been a little naughty as a child eating rather too many sweets I had a lot of dental work in my early teens – I think this is what gave me my interest in dental nursing. I left the Penzance practice to take up a Lead Nurse position at Plymouth University’s Peninsula Dental School in Truro when their new Knowledge Spa facility opened. After 5 years there I came to work for Smile Together (PCH Dental as it was until 2016) as the Team Lead Dental nurse for the west of the county. I enjoyed the management and operational side of this role and as those responsibilities grew, I reduced my frontline clinical delivery until in 2017 I took on the role of Clinical Operations Manager and most recently moved across to the commercial and operations team of Smile Together as Clinical Innovations Programme Manager to drive further enhancements in patient care and social impact, contributing to Smile Together’s mission of tackling oral health inequality – you can read more about my career here.

What inspires me most about Smile Together are the people I work with. Everyone is willing to go that extra mile for our patients. To anyone considering working for Smile Together I’d say come and embrace the opportunity – you never know where it will take you!

Outside of work I love visiting new places, walking my dog, trying new restaurants and catching up with friends.

The fun bit

Cats or dogs?

Surfing or sunbathing?

Manual or electric toothbrush?

Cornish cider or gin?

Mini or VW Campervan?

Peace and quiet or loud and lively?

Flossing or interdental brushing?

Full on roast or salad?

Football or rugby?

Rock or classical?

Under cover or outside in the elements?

I love my cat Nelly ❤



Cornish Gin

VW Campervan

Depends on the occasion!

Interdental brushing




Outside in the elements

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