As you may be aware, we have been asked by the Chief Dental Officer of England to resume Face-to-Face care from 08th June, 2020. We expect to be only able to see a limited number of patients a day as we will be implementing social distancing and strong infection control procedures.
First of all, we would like to thank you all for your understanding during the past few months and continued messages of support. Just before the lockdown, we were inspected by the Care Quality Commission to review patient care and Infection Control practices. We are pleased to say that we received a complimentary report, which can be viewed here.
Our team has been working tirelessly to get to all of our patients who need us just as soon as we can. We have a robust plan and training regime, so we can ensure that resumption of services are safe, effective and prioritises the most urgent needs. You will appreciate that after ten weeks of closure, we have already been contacted by patients who are now in desperate need. We will prioritise the relief of pain and want to see everyone as soon as we can.
Initially, we will only be seeing, Patients with emergency dental problems that require urgent assessment and treatment.
We are expecting further guidelines in coming weeks to be able to see patients:
1. Patients with treatment that was not completed before the lockdown.
2. Patients who were due for routine examinations, hygienist visits, during the period of closure.
We have redrawn the way we work, so when we do resume; we can provide the highest level of care, that you have become accustomed to over the years.
We appreciate that your next visit at the surgery may feel different and that you may have questions, so here is some information on how your next visit will feel like.
Before your appointment
Before your appointment, we will send you all the critical information – including what to do when you arrive. We will request that all patients who are attending must update their medical history forms beforehand. These forms need to be filled digitally, so please do not print this out and bring with you. You can fill the forms here.
In line with social distancing norms, we request you to attend the appointment alone unless you are supporting a child or somebody vulnerable.
Please also note:
1. While attending the appointment, please restrict personal belongings to absolute essentials.
2. Please ensure you have already visited the lavatory and already brushed the teeth.
3. Upon your arrival, the surgery doors will be locked, so please call to let our team know you have arrived and stay in your car or wait outside the surgery, while maintaining social distancing protocol.
4. We are accepting card payments only.
Attending your appointment
As a precaution, we will be restricting the number of people attending the practice to one per treatment room. The entry and exit to the surgery will be in a staggered manner to ensure the number of interactions is limited.
1. When the treatment room is ready, our team will call you to notify that you can approach the surgery door. Alternative arrangements will be made for people who do not have a mobile phone; please let us know at the point of making an appointment.
2. Our colleague will take body temperature to ensure you do not have a fever and invite you in. In line with guidelines, if the body temperature is above 37.5 degrees, we will have to rearrange your appointment.
3. We have provided sanitation stations throughout the surgery; you will be asked to sanitise the hands and equipped with a face mask.
4. We will request payments at the beginning of appointment via card, our colleagues will be behind protective plastic screens, and the machine is disinfected before and after every transaction. This is to restrict a visit to reception on the way out.
5. No other patient will be present at the reception, and throughout your time in practice, you will be chaperoned by a team member.
Naturally, our clinical team can not adhere to social distancing norms as we need proximity to treat you, so all our team will be wearing extra Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to treat you safely. Depending on the treatment required, varying levels of PPE will be donned by the team.
All your personal belongings like coat and bags will be kept in a designated box, outside the treatment room. So in the first instance, please restrict these to essential items only.
If your treatment requires an AGP (Aerosol Generating Procedure) – any procedure that can cause spray – you will be asked to carefully rinse your mouth with a hydrogen peroxide solution for 60 seconds. Our clinicians will guide you.
After the appointment
Once the treatment is over, you will wash your hands, replace your mask, and collect your belongings from outside the treatment room. We will ask you to dispose of your mask in a clinical waste bin and leave the surgery after using the hand sanitisation station. Your further appointments will be made in the surgery or through a phone call.