Terra Dental Center Infection Control Protocol for COVID- 19
This infection protocol has been developed in effort to provide safe environment for our patients and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic and will be implemented in addition to all existing OSHA infection protocols that are already in effect.
1. Staff members will be screened each morning before the beginning of the day for symptoms of COVID-19 and their temperature will be taken and recorded. Staff members are instructed not to come to work if they feel sick or have been exposed to COVID- 19 and to return to work only upon confirming that they are negative for the virus. If any staff member feels sick in the middle of the day that staff member will be sent for testing and remaining appointments will be cancelled.
2. Patients will be pre-screened via phone interview the day prior to their appointment for COVID- 19 symptoms and risk level. Anyone who may be at higher risk or possibly symptomatic will be required to take a test prior to their dental appointment to show that they are negative for the virus. At the time of the appointment patients will be asked to fill out and sign the same questionnaire again.
3. Appointment will be staggered with social distancing in mind and schedule will be adjusted to the best of our abilities so that maximum 2 people are present at the reception area at any time. We ask patients to wait outside if there are already 2 people inside.
4. Solid Plexiglas shields have been installed at the reception and check out desk to provide for safe check in and check out process.
5. All furniture and surfaces in the waiting room will be wiped with high level disinfectants multiple times during the day. All pens and clipboards will be fully disinfected after each use. All magazines and other marketing materials have been removed from the waiting room.
6. Front desk personal will use gloves and will wash their hands after encounters with patients.
7. Dental assistants/ hygienists will bring the patients pass the reception door. At this point patients’ temperature will be taken by a touch less thermometer and will be recorded in a log by the front desk person. The log will be kept private and will not be visible and accessible by other patients.
8. Our dental staff will be wearing much higher level personal protective equipment: head cover, N95 mask and possibly 2nd surgical mask over the N95 mask, gloves, full length disposable gown, face shield. All protective equipment will be fully changed for each patient.
9. Dental operatories will be cleaned between patients following the protocol for disinfection for all surfaces with hospital grade disinfectant and allowing 10 min for the disinfectant to soak surfaces before being wiped, along with air spray disinfectant to remove all residual aerosols. There will be 10-15 min allowed between patients for full surface and air disinfection between patients.
10. All sterilization and disinfection protocols will be strongly reinforced with additional Infection control and OSHA training performed prior to opening the office for procedures.
11. Weather permitting the office will be aired out every few hours by opening the side doors and allowing for better air circulations
12. HVAC system will be used to remove the aerosols during the dental procedures using a cone attachment to high speed suction.
13. Staff members will be contained to a certain operatory with minimum access to other rooms so that we minimize the number of people patients come in contact with.
14. All patients will be asked to pre-rinse with hydrogen peroxide prior to any procedure to decrease the amount of aerosols released.
15. Cleanings will be done without cavitron and with hand scaling only to decrease aerosols created during the procedure. Whenever the dental procedure allows it slow speed drill will be used for the same purpose.
16. If schedule allows it, best efforts will be made to accommodate new treatment found necessary for patients who are seen for routine cleanings at the same visit so that we decrease the need of additional appointments.
17. All patients will be provided with this information along with other COVID-19 related documents prior to their appointment.
Now more than ever Terra Dental Center Team members are dedicated to provide comfortable and safe environment for our patients along with high quality treatment performed in the a time efficient manner.