Early on in dentistry, whether you are studying to be a dentist, hygienist or dental assistant, we are all taught about the importance of infection control and keeping our patients and ourselves safe! This includes risk assessment, hand hygiene, PPE, exposure prevention, disinfection and sterilization. So really, you might say we have literally been training and practicing for this pandemic our whole careers!
What does this mean for our patients that need care right now? Our number one goal is to keep our patients healthy, without putting our team in harm's way. Right now, that means limiting the number of patients that we see by postponing regular check-ups and elective dentistry. Even though we do believe that your oral health is of the utmost importance, we must do everything we can to stop the spread, and flatten the curve of COVID-19.
We are currently seeing only emergency patients as defined by our governing body (the College of Dental Surgeons of British Columbia) as uncontrolled bleeding, uncontrolled swelling, uncontrolled infection, injury or uncontrolled severe pain. For these appointments Drs. Faucher and Manji have ensured that our team members are all properly protected as well. We have a thorough screening process for all emergent care patients over the phone, we take forehead temperatures of anyone coming into the office (this means us to!), receptionists are wearing level 2 masks and gloves, and those of us working directly on patients have N95 masks, surgery gowns, gloves and protective eyewear. We are also scheduling only one patient in the office at the time, and asking patients to have their family members wait for them in their cars.
Stay tuned to this space to learn more about the changes we are undergoing to keep everyone safe!