LUMIA DENTAL is working tirelessly to prepare for the safe reopening of our office
Since the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the team at LUMIA DENTAL has been proactive in protecting our patients and our staff. We enhanced our already high sanitation standards in February of this year and decided to wind down our operations prior to the official statewide shutdown when it was clear that the virus had spread and too much was unknown to safely operate a dental office. While it was hard to close the office, we were glad to see all of our staff was healthy.
We have since then cared for our patients through free tele-consults and triaged true emergencies to certain specialists who are set up and permitted to provide care during the statewide shutdown.
Over the last two months, our entire team has researched and planned for what it takes to re-open our office as safely as possible and we are planning to do so based on the guidance of the state government, the CDC, and the American Dental Association. While many questions about this novel coronavirus are still unanswered, we have taken all available knowledge into account to design a multi-barrier infection control protocol at LUMIA DENTAL to minimize the risk of spreading and contracting this disease while we care for our patients' dental health. We are also proud that we have prepared to bring back our entire staff and provide jobs and income for our employees that have done so much for our patients and our office over the last two years.
Sanitation and Infection Control Protocol At LUMIA DENTAL
We are taking multiple measures for each stage of engaging with our patients - before, during, and after your visit - to minimize the risk of infection in general and for COVID-19 in particular. While "SARS-CoV-2" (the medical name of the virus that causes COVID-19) is highly infectious and spreads easily, the good news is that this virus is actually easy to kill outside of the body. Our staff will train on these procedures for an entire week prior to seeing patients as execution is just as important as the plan itself. No short-cuts, no exceptions!
The highest risk of transmission is person-to-person, followed by contaminated surfaces, and we are addressing these risks in the following way:
- Screening patients prior to their visit and maintaining physical distance between people
- Minimizing exposure to aerosols (spray of water and saliva droplets) during the visit
- Aggressive sanitation and sterilization of every surface after each visit
1. Patient screening and physical distance
While a high percentage of COVID-19 infected individuals may only show mild or even no symptoms at all, it is a sensible step to ask patients that exhibit symptoms that are possibly linked to COVID-19 to postpone their treatment at LUMIA DENTAL:
- All patients MUST complete a prescreening questionnaire within 24 hours of their visit. This can be done conveniently by text message, phone call or email.
- Each patient will again be screened for temperature and other symptoms in person when they present for their appointment.
- "Curbside check-in" option - Patients can check in with their smartphone and wait near the office until their chair is ready.
- Spaced out appointments slots - We are adding additional time around each appointments to minimize crowding and wait times.
- Anybody entering the office is asked to wear a face covering, and face masks are available for patients who need them.
- We are installing sneeze guards as a physical barrier between patients and our front desk staff.
- Patient forms can be conveniently filled out prior to your visit or on your own mobile device.
- Touchless payment options are provided.
- All surfaces are sanitized after every patient interaction.
- We provide hand sanitizer throughout the office and handwashing stations in every treatment room.
- The staff continues to sanitize all common area surfaces throughout the day with disinfectant wipes and hospital grade UV-C light radiation.
2. Minimizing The Spread of Aerosols
LUMIA DENTAL has made large investments in additional equipment and gear to minimize contamination from saliva droplets that may be generated during dental treatment. This helps to keep our team safe and reduces the risk of the virus landing on surfaces that may be touched by the next patient.
- Patients will first rinse with a disinfecting mouth rinse that is safe for humans but deadly for the virus.
- Next, a new suction device is placed in the mouth that minimizes the aerosols produced during the procedure and actually makes it more comfortable for the patient to stay open.
- For additional safety measure, we also place another new device just outside of the mouth, a standalone vacuum device that removes 99.97% of remaining aerosols produced.
- We are equipped with additional and sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE) for all of our providers and prepared to compliantly sterilize and reuse, in an effort to help hospital workers should they still experience shortages by the time we reopen our office. Please excuse that our providers will appear a lot more "covered up", but don't be alarmed, it's just for your and their protection.
3. Aggressive Sanitation and Sterilization
We have always taken cleanliness, sanitation and infection control very seriously at LUMIA DENTAL. This mindset is extremely helpful as we are adding extra steps and capabilities to clean and sanitize our office.
- The reception and each treatment room has new air purifiers using the novel PECO technology which destroys and sterilizes air pollutants, bacteria and viruses that may escape traditional HEPA filtration standards.
- All personnel and patients will be provided with shoe covers to avoid carrying the virus into the office.
- We have secured additional disinfectant supplies and materials to double up on the cleaning process we conduct after every patient visit.
- After all cleaning steps have been performed, each treatment room will be radiated with hospital grade UV-C light sterilization devices after every patient appointment.
We will continue to update and invest in the latest technology to further enhance our safety measure so our patient can rely on the best possible prevention during their dental visit. This is how, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, cutting-edge dentistry meets a modern patient experience at LUMIA DENTAL.