WE'RE OPEN AGAIN!!!
As a result of the most recently updated guidelines put forth by the Governor's office, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the CDC regarding the COVID-19 viral pandemic, our office is beginning to re-open to once again to provide necessary dental care beyond the scope of urgent emergencies AND we are once again permitted to peform aerosol-producing procedures.
Aerosol-producing procedures include:
- teeth cleaning which utilizes a Cavitron (ultra-sonic) scaler.
- Full-mouth prophy cup / polishing use
- Dental handpiece (drill) use, which requires air and water spray to operate correctly
Consequently, we are currently scheduling our patients for both their usual recall "cleaning" appointments as well as their restorative dental care.
Our office will is scheduling any and all appointment types which comply with the current regulations. These regulations are ever-changing. We will continue to update our website and inform our patients as the guidelines evolve and we will contact patients to re-schedule any previously cancelled appointments.
The office is also still available to provide emergency treatment by appointment only. If you are experienceing a dental emergency after regular office hours, please call (610) 248-9068.
We are also taking extended measures to further protect our patients and team. Please check our website regularly for details, as we continually update it describing new infection control protocols, since these measures are continually evolving as more information develops.
The following information details the measures that will be enacted (in addition to our already existing infection control protocol):
1. Prior to Appointment
- Health history review for ALL upcoming and incoming appointed patients and determining their COVID-19 risk factors: 1. respiratory symptoms, 2. fever >100.4 Fº, 4. pending COVID-19 test results, 3. potential past contact with someone else that has been diagnosed with COVID-19. Patients that meet ANY of these (or other) risk factors, or are otherwise symptomatic, may be asked to reschedule.
- COVID symptomatic patients WILL be re-scheduled and referred to their PCP for further assessment.
- Patients diagnosed with COVID-19 will be able to schedule a dental appointment (in accordance with the current state dental guidelines at that time) AFTER two confirmed negative COVID tests OR 72hrs. after all COVID-related symptoms have resolved.
- Patients with other high-risk medical conditions (heart disease, emphysema, COPD, diabetes, etc.) MAY be recommended to schedule to a later date.
2. Arrival to Office for Scheduled Dental Appointment
- All patients arriving for an appointment are required to wear face masks covering both mouth and nose.
- Patient temperature checks will be completed by a staff member.
- A hand sanitizer hygiene station, tissues and a hands-free trash bin will be available for use to all in-coming and out-going patients in the reception area.
- Completion of a "COVID-19 Patient Disclosure" form.
- The reception area will be continually disnifected throughout the day as patients arrive and leave.
- Signs will be posted in the reception area detailing proper hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette.
3. During Patient Appointment
- Patients will be asked to perform a 30 second pre-op rinse of 1% hydrogen peroxide once they are seated in the treatment room.
- HEPA filtration units with UV-C light activation have been installed to specifically capture and kill any airbourne virus particles and will run continuously throughout the day.
- Periodic fogging of treatment air spaces with hypochlorous acid (HOCl) @200ppm in order to control potentially aerosolized pathogens.
- Surface disinfection protocol of all operatory surfaces has been updated to comply with guidelines recommended for COVID-19 management.
- Any patients in need of urgent emergency dental care that have also been determined to be positive for COVID-19, will be treated in an isolated treatment room and ALL standard precautions (including gowns, N95 masks, face shields, etc) will be strictly adhered to.
4. Staff Safety
- All staff will monitor and log their temperatures at the beginning of the work day.
- All staff providing treatment will continue to follow universal precautions. The use of N95 masks (and/or KN95 / level 3 surgical masks), full-length surgical gowns and full-face shields by staff will be required for any aerosol-producing procedures.
We will continue to update these guidelines and hopefully schedule more of our dental patients as new information from the state board of health is released.