Throughout the current coronavirus pandemic our first priority has been the safety and well-being of our patients and staff and this continues to be the case. Although the remaining COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted among the general population, we still need to act cautiously to stop the spread of the virus. The Chief Dental Officer has confirmed that most COVID-19 restrictions within dental practices should remain in place and we thank you in advance for your understanding and co-operation with this. A summary of the current COVID-19 standard operating procedures are listed below –
◊ Patient’s MUST cancel their appointment and self-isolate if:
Anyone presenting with any COVID-19 symptoms should arrange a PCR test immediately and stay at home until they have received their results.
◊ If you consider yourself to be extremely clinically vunerable to COVID-19 then please contact the Practice on (01629) 812991 to discuss this with a member of our dental team.
◊ All patients will be sent a secure link via email or text message to the documents that would normally be completed at the practice. To help reduce paperwork we would be most grateful if these forms are completed electronically prior to your appointment on either a tablet, smartphone or PC.
◊ To help with social distancing you can be accompanied by a maximum of one carer or parent, if necessary, but we would politely request that any other members of family wait outside the premises.
◊ Please ensure that you only bring essential personal items with you to your appointments.
◊ Patients must wear a face mask during their visits to the practice, unless medically exempt. Please be aware, however, that due to national shortages in PPE we will be unable to supply masks for this purpose.
◊ At the practice, the upstairs toilet facilities will be closed to patients and will be allocated for staff-use only. The downstairs toilet facilities will be locked and only opened on request – instructions will be left on the entrance to the facilities. This is because all the surfaces within the toilet facilities will need to be disinfected after every single use. The facilities won’t therefore be available for toothbrushing during this time.
Upon arrival at the Practice –
◊ Please try to arrive as close to your appointment time as possible.
◊ In line with updated guidance, we are now able to operate the Practice with an open door policy and patients are able to enter the premises upon arrival. However, to help with social distancing there will be a maximum number of patients that are allowed in our waiting room at any one time so patients may be politely asked to wait outside until their appointment.
◊ Upon entering the Practice please disinfect your hands with antibacterial gel at our hand hygiene station and check-in at our reception desk.
◊ Floor markers are present inside the practice to aid with social distancing and the chairs in the waiting room have been positioned 2m apart.
◊ To help with cross-infection control, all the literature and policies in the waiting room have been temporarily removed – if you require any leaflets or copies of our policies then please see our receptionist after your appointment who will be more than happy to help.
◊ For the foreseeable future our clinicians will not be collecting patients in person and instead will be calling them to the surgeries via the big screen in the waiting area.
◊ When you are called into our surgeries, you will find that our clinicians will already be dressed in the appropriate PPE including masks and face shields and they will remain like this for the duration of your appointment. You may also notice some of our non-clinical staff are also wearing PPE. We appreciate that this can sometimes be very daunting and seem impersonal but we hope you understand why this is necessary during these times. Some of the procedures we carry out generate aerosols (fine particles in the air) which means that we have to wear enhanced PPE and this looks different to what you will have seen us wear before. This may be a little bit scary at first for young children so it would perhaps be a good idea just to pre-warn them about this.
◊ Before commencing any treatment, your dentist will present you with a treatment plan on an ipad and will ask if you would like a copy sending to you by e-mail.
◊ Upon leaving the surgery, please immediately disinfect your hands at one of our hand hygiene stations. An additional station is positioned on the first floor landing.
◊ After your appointment we would be most grateful if you would visit our reception desk before your departure where our receptionist will assist you with your invoice and book any further appointments. We would politely request that wherever possible any payments are made by card (preferably contactless) or Apple Pay.
Once again we would like to express our sincere thanks for all your understanding and assistance with these new protocols and we look forward to seeing you at your next appointment!
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