PATIENTS SAFETY IS OUR FIRST PRIORITY
COVID-19 HEALTH AND SAFETY PRECAUTIONS
As Ontario and Canadian Government officials begin easing restrictions on elective dental procedures, we are preparing to re-open our office and resume the provision of dental care. This has been an unprecedented situation that has come with new challenges .
I stress the importance of fully complying with the current Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO), Ontario Dental Association (ODA), and Public Health of Canada’s COVID-19 guidelines for re-opening dental practices.
We are actively preparing our dental team to ensure that they feel confident and safe in the new work environment during the ongoing pandemic. To ensure the health, safety, and security of our staff and patients, we have implemented many changes to our workspace including:
- Installing a plexiglass sneeze-guard at the reception area to protect our front desk personnel and patients.
- Freestanding hand sanitizer dispensers in the waiting room, and the hygienist and doctor’s operatory.
- A portable air purifier in every operatory with HEPA filters that remove 99.97% of particles. These air purifiers are also equipped with UV-C light which kills 99.999% of viruses, bacteria, and fungi.
- All dental team members including myself, hygienists, and dental assistants will be wearing face shields, properly fitted surgical or N95 masks, latex-free gloves, and surgical gowns throughout the provision of care to all patients.
- Following each patient visit, we will fully sanitize and disinfect the operatory as well as the protective equipment worn by the team.
COVID-19 SAFETY PROCEDURES FOR APPOINTMENT:
Prior to appointments:
- We will confirm the health status of patients at 2 weeks, 2 days, and 2 hours prior to their scheduled appointments over the phone.
- No patients infected with COVID-19 will be seen.
Patient Arrival Protocol:
- Upon arrival, patient must wait in the parking lot and phone the front desk (905-881-7839) to notify them of their arrival.
- To reduce the number of people in the office at a given time,all patients are asked to wait in their car in the parking lot for their appointment. The front desk personnel (Tiziana, Lucy or Cheryl) will call the patient on their cell phone once their appointment slot is ready.
- Once the patient is ready to be seen, Tiziana, Lucy or Cheryl will greet patient at the front door. Patient is required to wear own mask and will be seated in the front door vestibule to undergo preliminary screening.
- Tiziana, Lucy or Cheryl will then take the body temperature of the patient using a forehead scanner, oxygen level using an oximeter, and screen the patient using the Patient Screening Form.
- After, the patient will be asked to complete and sign the Patient Acknowledgement of COVID-19 Risk Form. Please bring your own pen to fill-in and sign this document.
- Prior to entering the operatory, patients will be required to keep their own mask on, sanitize their hands, and will be given shoe caps to wear throughout the procedure.
- To reduce unnecessary exposure, we request that patients bring in and wear their own personal eyeglasses/protection and face covering/mask.
During Dental Care:
- Prior to examination of the oral cavity, patients must rinse their mouths with 1% hydrogen peroxide for 60 seconds.
- Patients must wear all safety protective provided i.e. shoe covers and personal protective eyewear.
- No family members are allowed to accompany the patient unless they require assistance. All young patients must also attend their appointment by themselves, while their parents or guardians wait in the car until they are ready to be picked up.
- Individuals who have to accompany a patient must wear a mask at all times while in the office and must go through the same screening procedures as the patient.
- Immediately after their procedure, patients must put on their mask and sanitize their hands before leaving operatory.
- For payment, we will accept credit, debit, cheques or e-transfer. Terminals will be sanitized after each use. Patients choosing to pay by e-transfer must have their payments processed prior to leaving the office.
- Insurance claims will be filed via Electronic Data Input (EDI).
Moving forward, we will be confirming all appointments via phone, text message or email and performing remote pre-screening over the phone; we request that all patients update their cell phone number, home phone number, and email address with Tiziana Lucy or Cheryl for ease of communication.
As we work through the different stages of re-opening at a comfortable pace for our patients and our staff, I hope that you are both healthy and optimistic for the future. 2020 has certainly offered up its challenges, and I want you to know that my team and I are here to help as we work toward defining a “new normal” in dental practice.
I am committed to ensuring the health and safety of my patients and staff. We have spared no costs to ensure that we strictly follow the infection prevention and control procedures as recommended by RCDSO. As such, regrettably, we will have to add a surcharge of 10% to offset some of the cost of the extra PPE. Thank you for your understanding.
And most of all, thank you for the trust you have bestowed on me and my team over the years and allowing me the incredible privilege of taking care of your dental needs.
We are making every effort to provide a safe and healthy environment for our patients and staff, and we look forward to welcoming you back. New patients are always welcome!
Tiziana, Lucy and Cheryl will be happy to schedule your appointments.
Dr. Francis K Long, BSc., D.D.S., FICOI