COVID-19 Response (May 4, 2020)
COVID-19 Response (May 4, 2020)
Elective Dental Treatments Will Resume on Monday, May 11, 2020.
Dear Valued Patient:
We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. Our office will start seeing patients for elective treatment on Monday, May 11th. During these coming weeks, we will be contacting all patients that had affected appointments to reschedule their visits. Our front desk team will be available on regular hours to answer your call or emails in a timely manner.
Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our protocols are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. At this time, we want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice; including the additional precautions we’ve implemented specifically to address COVID-19:
- Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), CDC and OSHA. The thorough and rigorous cleaning, sterilization, and disinfection of all instruments and surfaces are routine and second nature to us.
- Sanitation of Exam and Treatment Rooms: Before you enter the exam room, all surfaces have been cleaned and disinfected, including the dental chair, light, drawer handles, and countertops. Basically, we sanitize everything that has been touched or could have been touched. Any protective covers that are necessary are replaced as well. The chemicals we use are professional-grade and designed specifically for clinical environments and to be used against COVID-19. We also wash our hands frequently, and always before seeing patients.
- Personal Protective Equipment for our STAFF will be upgraded, following the CDC’s specific recommendations, including N95 masks, face shields, surgical gowns, hair covers, and eye protection as recommended for dental treatment. Staff will be changing in and out of their uniforms and shoes in the office.
- Disposable Items: We use as many disposable items as possible, such as needles, gloves, masks, etc. After each patient, disposable items are carefully discarded according to current guidelines, and all members of the treatment team thoroughly wash their hands.
- Installed Air purifier, “Air Scrubber”, introduces ActivePure®Technology that combines high-intensity UVC lighting with a state-of-the-art process and destroys over 99% of airborne and surface contaminants. https://www.airscrubberadvancedbyaerus.com/#ourtechnology
- Extraoral High Vaccum (in addition to our small and large suctions) will be used to decrease aerosols to a minimum during dental procedures. https://www.vaniman.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Vanguard-Gold-Mobile-Spec-Sheet.pdf
- Dental Hygiene Appointments will be using High Vacuum Mirrors and the Vaniman Gold extraoral vacuum system to control aerosols during cleaning appointments. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlHfc3yWQrU
You may see some protocol changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:
- Patients will be contacted prior to appointment to complete a pre-screening questionnaire and we will not treat anyone with a fever, cough or other symptoms of respiratory illness. Also, the patient’s temperature will be recorded upon entering the office.
- Our staff members will also be screened every morning and no staff member will work if they are experiencing any respiratory symptoms.
- We will ask you that you wear a mask when entering the office and use hand sanitizer provided. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.
- At this time, we ask that only patients will come into our office and any companions need to wait in the car.
- Our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children’s toys, and so forth since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.
- Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.
Dental care is vital to stay healthy and prevent minor issues from progressing into painful, complex, and expensive conditions. Please rest assured that our office is likely one of the most thoroughly cleaned and disinfected environments you can possibly be in. We’ve missed you, and I look forward to seeing you again soon.
Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors, and friends.
Maria E. Rodriguez- Samarkos, John A. Samarkos, and the wonderful Tower Dental Team