**Effective Monday, 5/4/2020**
We hope this finds you and your family in good health. We miss you! All of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one things has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.
Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in order to keep our team and patient family safe.
Our office follows recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the Montana Dental Board, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.
As most of you have heard, Governor Bullock‘s Phase I of reopening our state was effective on Monday, April 27, 2020, and Phase II started Monday, June 1st. In addition to the strict infection control guidelines that have been in place for many years, some new procedures have been added for us to be allowed to open. We assure you that our team has been hard at work researching these guidelines to come up with a plan to ensure that our patients and team remain safe.
- All clinical team using face masks, gloves, and clinical attire during patient treatment
- Office air filtered, new filters installed in April 2020
- Treatment room surfaces and fixed equipment cleaned with high-level disinfectant after each patient
- All instruments heat-pressure sterilized
- Commonly touched surfaces (door handles, light switches, toilet handles, water faucet controls, counters, etc) cleaned with high-level disinfectant throughout the workday
- Our dental treatment water is distilled and sterilized to make sure it is pure
NEW PROCEDURES to EXPECT:
- Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office
- Please try to come unaccompanied. We realized some of you need assistance yet we’d like to minimize extra people whenever possible
- Exceptions: parent/guardian or Power of Attorney (POA) of patient, and those needing assistance (limit to one per patient)
- If needed, we’ll allow an additional guest to come inside at the end of the visit to aid with the patient’s checking out process
- Our front doors will remain locked and a team member will control patient flow in and out of the building
- You’ll be asked screening questions as mentioned above
- Your temperature will be taken with a contactless thermometer
- Hand sanitizer will be dispensed and, if physical paperwork is needed when checking in, you’ll be given a personal pen to use during your visit
- Face coverings are required (mask, faceshield, etc) for 5 years old and older; if you don’t have one, we’ll provide a mask for you. If you have a medical condition that inhibits your ability to wear a face covering (mask or shield), we require a note from your physician stating so.
- You’ll be asked to sit in our reception area where chairs are spaced and magazines/books/photobooth are removed for physical distancing and disinfection purposes
- If our reception is full, we’ll ask you to wait outside/in your vehicle and we’ll call, text, or wave you in when ready
- Prior to treatment, you’ll will swish for 60 seconds with a pre-procedural anti-microbial rinse (at least 10 seconds for children), either Carifree CTx4 Treatment Rinse or Chlorhexidine, prior to any aerosol-generating treatment. This has been shown to be effective at killing bacteria and viruses for a short time, so even if a patient does happen to be a silent carrier for any respiratory-spreading disease, this will significantly decrease the microbes in their mouth and the environment. (See video immediately below for more info)
- After using the rinse, we’ll have you wash your hands for 20 seconds.
- To minimize aerosols:
- Our dental hygienists will only be using the ultrasonic instrument judiciously and, if so, with high-volume suction
- Our dentists & dental assistants will be using primarily high-volume suction (may be in the form of a mouthpiece) or a rubber dam
- Upon arrival in the morning, our team will have their temperature taken and symptoms recorded. If not feeling well, they will be asked to stay home
- Our front office team will be using face coverings (mask or face shield)
- Our front office team will disinfect commonly touched front office surfaces after each patient
- Our clinical team will be wearing faceshields in addition to masks
- We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time
As per Governor Bullock’s Phase I & II Directive, we are recommending for any vulnerable patients to postpone treatment (unless urgent or a dental emergency).
- Vulnerable Individuals: people over 65 years of age and/or those with serious underlying health conditions, including high blood pressure, chronic lung disease, diabetes, obesity, asthma, and those whose immune system is compromised such as by chemotherapy for cancer and other conditions requiring such therapy.
During this time, things may seem different in the dental office just as they are in our regular lives. Protective protocols will continue to evolve as the world learns more about this virus and how to keep everyone safe. Rest assured that we will stay up to date with all new developments, and we will implement all recommended protocols designed to keep you and our team safe while here in the office.
We understand that as the coronavirus situation has unfolded, all of us have been faced with questions about how to lead our daily lives and been met with uncertainty and frustration. Please reach out to our office if you have any questions or concerns about anything. We will be a resource for you in any way that we can, even if it doesn’t pertain to your dental visit.
See you soon 🙂
~ Your MT West Dentist team
[ Last reviewed/updated: 10/19/2020 ]
We Love What We Do
As a team, we are committed to providing quality, preventive dental care with a personal and compassionate touch in a professional atmosphere while fostering healthy families and lifestyles.
Monday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Thursday: 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Friday – Sunday: CLOSED