Andrew P. Cesari, DMD
COVID-19 OFFICE PROTOCOLS
There are some significant changes being made to our office environment and protocols in response to COVID-19. The environmental changes will be permanent while some of the protocols will be interim. The Universal Precautions and Infection Control methods we have applied for decades to control cross-contamination from patient to patient, patient to staff, and staff to patient have and do work very well. COVID-19 presents a major challenge because it is so highly contagious, spreading so easily through the air by coughing, sneezing and even talking, contaminating surfaces untouched physically by the infected person.
Below are the steps we will be taking to insure everyone’s safety:
- Disinfect (for all pathogens) the room air, surfaces and floor with Ultraviolet-C (UV-C) lights in between patients;
- Constantly disinfect the air circulating in the top 14 inches of the room with directional UV-C even when the room is occupied;
- Install a hospital grade, multistage air filtration system for the heating and cooling system with UV-C lights also placed in the duct work;
- Increase the rate of the air filtration so more air is disinfected and filtered per minute; direct air flow in the room down and away from patient and staff, toward return air ducts, to minimize aerosol contamination of patient-to-staff or staff-to-patient;
- Use high volume suction systems that greatly reduce splatter and aerosols.
Office protocols will be adjusted as well, and certain ones will be phased out as warranted:
- There will be a pre-appointment screening process by phone, with questions concerning recent health history and personal contacts.
- We will meet each patient at the door entrance off the parking lot at your appointment time. For now, there is no waiting room so please do not arrive early. Please have a mask on when greeted at the door and keep it on until seated in the dental chair.
- We will ask you some questions again, take your temperature by forehead and check your O2 level with a finger dosimeter. You will then put any personal affects you are carrying in your hands into your purse, if you have one, which we will then put into a plastic bag. Those not carrying a purse will put any objects not placed in their pockets into a plastic bag. We will carry the plastic bag into the treatment room for you.
- Before being seated in the dental chair, we will provide you with hand sanitizer.
- We ask patients to limit extra companions in the office to a guardian, or a maximum of two children until we get the constant-on directional UV-C lights for the waiting room. (Should be in five weeks.)
- The treatment room doors will be kept closed during your appointment in order to maximize the efficiency of the air filtration/disinfection system.
- We ask that companion adult non-patients or non-guardians please wait in the car for the time being. Parents, if possible, should bring no more than two children in at a time for visits.
- If you are a patient, please wear your mask until you are inside the exam room. Those who are not in the chair, but are also in the room, should wear a mask as well.
My staff and I are committed to providing the safest possible environment for our patients in which to receive their dental care.
Andrew P. Cesari, DMD