COVID-19 INSTRUCTIONS

Some safety measures in our Dental Practice

We want to assure you that we are taking continuous steps to ensure that our office remains a safe place for every patient.

1. Educating and training our team

One of the most important things we are doing during this time is training and educating our staff:

  • Our team has had refresher training in proper handwashing techniques. This may seem basic; however, it is the most important thing we can do to prevent the spread of the virus. Consequently, we have spent a lot of time ensuring that our team does it well and often, especially before and after every patient encounter.

  • They have practiced the appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) prior to caring for a patient to prevent contamination.

  • We encourage staff that is not feeling well to proactively stay home for the required time.

  • We have everyone in the office take their temperature at the beginning of every day and we will immediately send home anyone with elevated temperature (38°C and above).

  • We have created a specific checklist of recommendations for our team to follow so that they arrive to work healthy and go home to their families without worry. ​

2. Patient Interviews and Social Distancing

Before patient arrival, every effort is made to:

  • Filter patients during the phone call when scheduling appointments for care using established and recommended screening checklists and scripts.

  • Reschedule patients who show any signs of a cough, sore throat, fever, muscle pain, loss of smell or taste, GI symptoms or profound fatigue.

  • Instruct patients to call ahead and reschedule their appointment if they develop symptoms of a respiratory infection (e.g., cough, sore throat, or fever….) on the day they are scheduled to be seen.​

To promote social distancing:

  • Prioritize high-risk patients (immune-compromised, over 70) with early morning appointments so there is less contact with other people.

  • When booking patients, we are spreading out the schedule so there are fewer people in the waiting room (a maximum of two people at a time).

  • Patients are encouraged to arrive on time for appointments, not early, nor late, to minimize waiting time in our office and to decrease the number of people present at once,

  • If a patient is being accompanied, their escort should wait in the car to limit the number of people in the waiting room and promote social distancing.

3. Measures Upon Arrival

  • Leave the office door open to avoid contact with door handles.

  • Patients are to enter the clinic wearing a mask and to keep mask until escorted to the treatment room and will exit the Clinique wearing their mask.

  • Provide supplies such as alcohol-based hand rub with 60-95% alcohol upon entering the dental clinic.

  • Immediately required to use a hand sanitizer from a no-touch dispenser stand and vigorously rub hands for 20 seconds.

  • Asked again about the presence of symptoms of respiratory infection and history of travel or contact with possible COVID-19 patients.

  • Assessed for respiratory symptoms and fever (with a non-contact digital infrared forehead   thermometer

  • If fever (temperatures of 38°C or higher) or respiratory symptoms are present, they will be advised to seek medical treatment and their visit will be rescheduled.

  • As testing for the virus becomes more available, we will be incorporating this added benefit to screening patients.

  • If an examination room is not readily available, ensure social distancing in the waiting room by placing seating a minimum of 6 feet apart.

4. Reception Room and Front Desk Safety Measures

  • We have removed all clutter and anything that is not easily disinfected from the waiting room (magazines, pillows, toys, etc.)

  • Frequent wipe downs and foggings of waiting rooms, door handles, tables, light switches, computers...

  • We have installed plexiglass shields at the reception to limit close contact between receptionists and potentially infectious patients.

  • We have also purchased a new Hepa filter with UV-C light for air purification in the waiting room ( the operatories are also equipped with Hepa filters)

5. Protocols of the Clinical Team

It is important for you to know that dentists are experts in infection control.

We have always adhered to the highest standard of care and universal precautions in the entire clinic, but now, with Covid-19, we have taken extra steps to ensure that procedures are followed consistently and correctly.

Hand Hygiene is performed by our staff:

  • Before and after all patient contact, contact with potentially infectious material, and before putting on and after removing personal protective equipment (PPE - masks, gloves, cap, eye protection, face shields, gowns, shoe covers).

  • Washing hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer for at least 20 seconds.

6. Patients in the Operatory

  • Asked to rinse with a virucidal solution of 1-2%  Hydrogen Peroxide or povidone-iodine for 60sec.

 

7. Protocols After the Clinical Treatment

  • Once the patient has left the operatory, the operatory is disinfected from aerosol with a FOGGER mist of Hypochlorous acid (HOCL)

  • The room will also undergo appropriate additional cleaning and surface disinfection by applying an EPA-registered, hospital-grade disinfectant for SARS-CoV-2  and all other infectious diseases.

  • We place instruments after each use into an autoclave (a high-pressure steam oven) to kill every known infectious organism, including Coronavirus

  • NB: We have just purchased a FOGGER that will utilize a safe and non-toxic EPA Registered disinfectant solution (Hypochlorous acid which is generated by the electrolysis of water and salt, 80-100 times stronger than bleach) to Clean, Sanitize and Disinfect the operatory and air. This will make our environment cleaner, safer, and healthier for our patients and staff.

8. Safety Measures After the Visit

  • Encourage payment by PayPass, Debit card, Credit card, Apple pay, Samsung pay.

  • Review of estimates and insurance forms can be carried out via phone and email.

  • Patients wash hands before leaving

We are confident that these guidelines will help to create a safe environment for all of our patients and team members and hope that you can feel secure in the knowledge that we are doing everything in our power to provide the safest clinical conditions in order to protect our patients, our team and our families.