Firstly, with everything going on just now; I would like to clarify that until any further changes from a government level, we are still open and operating as normal for our patients. All dental practices have very strict infection control procedures including disinfection of all surfaces between patients, using mostly single use equipment which is disposed of in a clinical waste bin and then incinerated, and any re-usable instruments are sterilised on site in special vacuum autoclaves at 134 degrees.
We are however taking some further precautions and making arrangements given the seriousness of the spread of coronavirus. Namely:
- Following the health secretary comments about self isolation for over 70’s this morning, all patients in this age bracket will be offered to reschedule their appointments in the coming weeks. We can however work with you to arrange a suitable appointment when no other patients are around if required, helping to minimise the risk of transmission.
- We are removing every second chair in our waiting area so that there is an increased social distance between patients. We will also be seeing less patients at the moment but in event that all the seats are taken we will kindly invite some people to wait outside/in their car until their appointment time. It would also be helpful if you can come alone to your appointment where possible.
- As we will be seeing less patients in the next few weeks, for any of those who are self isolating but have no way of getting supplies in, please give us a call and if we can help with that in any way we’d be happy to.
- All books, magazines and newsletters have been removed from our waiting room.
- Regarding payment we would kindly ask if you can use contactless or card where possible as this avoids cash handling for patients and staff alike.
- In the event that we do need to close in the coming weeks we have preemptively teamed up with 3 other local dental practices so that any patients requiring emergency dental treatment will still have access to a dentist. In this event, you would still contact us first as normal and we would organise the referral.
- With that being said we are also making it easier for our patients to get in touch with us and are now on WhatsApp. If you need to make or reschedule an appointment you can contact us using the normal pathways and also now by WhatsApp on 07469764766.
- For patients who are self isolating and require any dental advice this means we can now arrange for a video call with one of our dentists where possible.
This final point can be mainly for advice only, to chat about treatment options with our treatment co-ordinator Danielle, and even to review progress with some of our Invisalign (invisible braces) patients.
On that note I actually just had my own ones fitted during the week with our dentist Laura:
So to summarise we are still here for our patients and and will aim to carry on as normal as we can until as a whole we are through this thing.
And we will get through it. Be careful and be safe.
Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)