Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our ofﬁce. Our infection control processes ensure that when you receive care, it’s clean, safe and comfortable. Our team follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act (WISHA) and the Washington State Dental Association (WSDA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.
Since the pandemic continues to shape our day to day lives you may notice a few changes when you come in for your next appointment. We made these accommodations to help protect our patients and staff during this trying time. Some examples of our safety protocols include:
· Our ofﬁce will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. When you come to our office, we may ask you to remain in your vehicle until we are ready to see you. Please wear a mask to our office. Our hygienist or assistant will come out to greet you and take your temperature with a forehead thermometer. You will then be escorted right to the operatory. If you are walking or or need assistance into our office, we will take your temperature in the reception room. Our chairs are 6 feet apart for social distancing.
· We will all be wearing masks and we have hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes and masks available in the reception area for your use if needed.
· We have plexiglass shields at both reception and check out desks. You may wish to bring your own pens. We will be wiping ours between patients as well as our credit card terminals.
· You may see that our reception room will no longer offer magazines, newspapers, and beverages since those items are difﬁcult to clean and disinfect. We have air purifiers in each room and each day we fog the rooms with HOCl.
Once in operatory, we will ask you to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer. Then we will have you pre-rinse with a solution that kills 99.9% of viruses including COVID-19. We also check your oxygen level with a pulse oximeter that fits on your finger. We have improved suction, face or loop shields and level-3 masks to minimize effects of aerosols.
· Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you may be offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.
· We have a separate guideline to monitor our staff daily to prevent the spread of disease and our office is cleaned and disinfected between patients and at the end of the day.
We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice.