Beginning from March 22nd onwards, the nation has been in lockdown due to the Corona virus and by May end we expect this to ease out a little bit. A few of our Partha Dental Clinics will reopen at this time to serve the needy patients because we believe that – “The longer dental practices remain closed to preventive care and early dental treatments, the more likely is it that the disease will progress, increasing the complications and the cost of treatment for our patients.”
The safety of patients, dentists and dental team members has been and always will be Partha Clinic’s number one priority and will be our utmost concern.
These are the steps we have incorporated in our new standard procedures or SoP’s to maintain health and hygiene and corona prevention.
This includes taking the temperature readings as part of routine, for every patient and staff every day.
Online assessment or video calling of the patient prior to performing dental procedures.
Making sure the personal protective equipment being used is appropriate for the procedures performed and is worn by the dentists and his/her assistant.
Using a rubber dam whenever possible to decrease possible exposure to infectious agents.
Using high-speed evacuation for all dental procedures producing an aerosol.
Autoclaving all dental hand pieces after each and every patient.
Having patients rinse with 1.5 percent hydrogen peroxide before each appointment. (COVID-19 is vulnerable to oxidation; this will reduce the salivary load of oral microbes.)
Cleaning and disinfecting public areas frequently, including door handles, chairs, counters, and bathrooms.
Removing magazines, reading materials, toys, and other items that are not easily disinfected after being touched.
Keeping all patient’s bags, purses etc in a plastic Ziploc, so as to not have any fear of infection.
Can the same mask be worn by the doctor for more than one patient?
No. Every mask is a single-use, disposable mask, that has to be changed.
Wear a surgical mask and eye protection with solid side shields or a face shield to protect the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose, and mouth during procedures likely to generate splashing or spattering of blood or other body fluids.
Change masks between patients, or during patient treatment if the mask becomes wet.
How should we maintain the dental practice’s physical environment?
Not more than 5 patients to wait in the waiting area.
All patients to come by appointments.
Social distancing whenever possible as an effective way of decreasing the likelihood of transmitting COVID-19.
Ask patients to arrive on time for their appointments, rather than too early, since that will minimize the amount of time they spend in the waiting room or reception area.
All scheduled appointments to minimize possible contact with other patients in the waiting room.
Remove magazines, reading materials, toys, stuffed animals, and other objects that may be touched by others and that are not easily disinfected.
The dentist will be available for consultation via phone in the event of patient need which is not an emergency.
The Indian Dental Association or IDA wants to help dentists minimize the risk of COVID-19 transmission when seeing patients by using the appropriate PPE for the dentists. As of April 16, FDA-approved masks and equipments for COVID-19 are available to doctors in India. Therefore, dentists should be aware that asymptomatic healthy appearing patients cannot be assumed to be free from COVID-19 , so it is a must to wear PPE while working.
Are our clinics ready to see patients post lockdown? Yes. We are. We have done the following and continue to stay aware, alert and fight the virus with safety equipment and distancing.
Guidance letters to patients explaining our precautions taken at the clinics.
Guidance on pre-appointment screening and no walk-ins.
In-office patient registration procedures including temperature taking and travel history.
Reception area preparation strategies like mask and sanitizing hands and putting bags etc in a zip-lock
Chair side checklist for the dentist and the assistant
Staff protection strategies have been put in place
Supplies shopping list of disinfectants and sanitizers, throw-away masks and plastic shoes covers.
We prevent cross contamination by following international Infection Control Protocol (ICP) in dentistry.
We are confident that with these protective measures in place, we can beat the Corona virus as we are committed to providing the best and the safest dental services across the nation .