CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATE: INDENTAL PRACTICE AT FEWSTER SQUARE, DECKHAM DENTAL PRACTICE AND NEW BIGGIN VILLA FAMILY DENTAL CLINIC
REOPENING: PATIENT INFORMATION
This document has been created based on multiple updated sources from within the dental, medical professions and the government.
It outlines how we at InDental Practice Fewster Square, Deckham Dental Practice and New Biggin Villa will adjust our normal procedures now that we have been allowed to reopen, as the pandemic peak has subsided.
It is not known at this time whether these procedures are temporary or whether they will become a permanent feature of the way dental practices must be run to ensure patient and staff safety in the future.
Our policies and recommendations are likely to change in line with scientific evidence over time.
We would like to thank all of our patients for their patience and forbearance during the pandemic and for their understanding and cooperation whilst we implement new measures at the practice.
Please be assured that dental practices were very safe environments before the pandemic and will continue to be so. However, we will have to modify our procedures to comply with Government policies
We greatly appreciate your assistance with any new or modified procedures at the practice.
The practice will re-open for patients Monday 8th June 2020.
We will prioritise patients as detailed below
1. We will initially be prioritising patients who have pain or problems
2. We will then prioritise to see those patients who have outstanding treatments to complete
3. As we achieve this we will return towards normal practice and see those who are awaiting routine examinations and scale and polish
4. When we have achieved a level of normal practice we will return to seeing new patients
PATIENT COMMUNICATION BEFORE REOPENING
Please contact the practice via telephone as usual. We will assess your level of risk for coronavirus before you attend the surgery.We will request that all patients who are attending the practice update their Medical History forms beforehand.
We will be unable to see patients who have COVID-19 or are self-isolating due to being in contact with someone who has COVID-19. This is to protect staff and fellow patients
We will ask that children are NOT accompanied to the surgery by grandparents especially if they are over 60 years of age and/or vulnerable.
MEASURES TO REDUCE THE RISK OF COVID-19 TRANSMISSION
Our normal cross-infection control protocols at the practice protect against all previously known pathogens, are already woven into all clinical activity carried out at the practice.
It should be remembered that a dental practice is already a very clean environment
compared to public areas and there is no evidence of COVID-19 transmission (or any other disease previously) occurring in increased rates in dental staff or dental patients.
We have evaluated all of the updated guidance and examined what measures have been put in place in other countries.
We feel that the measures which are outlined in this policy will reduce risk to the minimum level at the practice.
Please be assured that all of our clinical and non-clinical staff will also be complying with our procedures to reduce the risk of cross infection.
BEFORE ATTENDING THE PRACTICE
We will assess your coronavirus infection risk. If we feel that you are at risk of having possibly been infected, even if you are asymptomatic, we will respectfully request for you to delay any appointment with us for at least one month. If we are unable to contact you, we may need to cancel your appointment.
We recommend that patients in the high-risk groups for developing complications from coronavirus delay non-essential dental treatment for as long as possible until the trend of the pandemic becomes clear.
If you are in a high risk group and do require treatment we will schedule your
appointment at the beginning of the day.
When travelling to the practice, we would recommend that you limit close contact with other members of the public as far as possible.
We will ask all patients to wait outside before your appointment time and we will meet all patients outside the building and escort them into the clinic. We will check your temperature as part of assessing your coronavirus risk
One adult is able to attend with a child; please do not bring additional family members with you unless they are happy to wait in the car or outside the building.
ARRIVING AT THE PRACTICE
When you attend the practice the front door will remain locked. Please ring the bell to the left hand side of the entrance and a member of the team will welcome you.
We will take your temperature with a no-touch thermometer. If your temperature is above 37.8°C, you will be unable to enter the practice and will be asked to return home and self-isolate in line with the government guidelines.
We want to eliminate waiting inside the practice and at reception. Hence, appointments will be staggered so that patients do not arrive or leave at the same time as other patients, as far as we are able to manage.
If you are well, you will be asked to use the hand sanitiser in the reception area, you will then be directed straight to the surgery. We may ask you to use a mouthwash before some dental treatments are undertaken
When using the toilets, please do your best to ensure that you leave the facilities as you would expect to find them and wash your hands thoroughly for a minimum of 20 seconds. The restrooms will be regularly disinfected.
The practice team have spent time looking at every aspect of the practice in order to remove all non-essential items that could potentially be a cause of infection.
You will find that the practice may appear to be quite bare when you attend.
All clinical and common areas including door handles and surfaces will be regularly disinfected in addition to our normal surface cleaning protocols between patients.
The clinic will be providing a buffer period between patients to allow additional
time for enhanced decontamination procedures, allow for any treatment overruns
and allow preparation time for the next patient so that they do not need to wait in
the reception area.
Future appointments will be made and confirmed by email or telephone to limit
time spent at reception.
All dental staff will be using personal protective equipment (PPE) in line with current
recommendations and evidence. We apologise in advance for the reduction in social interaction that this will cause. Whilst our masks may make us appear impersonal and distant, please be assured we are still the same friendly team underneath it all!
We are aware that some dental treatments are aerosol generating procedures
It is difficult for us to carry out some procedures without the generation of some level of aerosol. Aerosol suspended in the air is a theoretical source of infection which we obviously wish to keep to a minimum. Currently the dental literature suggests:
1. Our use of our normal high-volume suction reduces aerosol production by over 90%.
2. Our regular surgical facemasks filter approximately 60% of remaining airborne particles.
3. FFP2 and FFP3 masks filter 94% and 99% respectively of airborne particles in both directions (patient to clinician and clinician to patient).
4. High volume extraction of the surgery reduces any latent aerosols
We feel that our normal dental procedures can be carried out with minimal risk by
the use of high-volume suction, and appropriate surgical masks.
Dental practices are very safe places with no known transmission of disease including COVID-19 occurring.
The vast majority of our patients are healthy without coronavirus and we are confident that we are able to provide dental care for these patients in as normal an environment as possible while bearing in mind our responsibilities to mitigate risks of infection spread as far as is practically possible.
This policy will be constantly reviewed and updated as required. If you have any questions regarding this policy or about your care at InDental Practice, Deckham Dental Practice or New Biggin Villa please do not hesitate to contact our practice manager Sue Mulholland via email on firstname.lastname@example.org.