How We’re Handling COVID-19 at Barnes Family Dentistry (updated May 2021)
To our Dental Family:
We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last year and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.
Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. 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.
Following the ending of most recent national and state mandates, you may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to ease up on some protocols while still ensuring the safety of our patients and staff. For example:
- Our office will communicate with you before your appointment to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office.
- Upon arrival, all patients will have their temperature checked with a forehead “no touch” thermometer. Depending on the outcome, you will either be treated or dismissed with a directive to seek care from your physician or county health department.
- With the increasing numbers of vaccinated people and the falling COVID positive rates, we are no longer requiring masks to be worn by patients or team members when walking throughout the office. Masks will be worn by our team when providing dental treatment (as usual). If you are more comfortable wearing a mask, that is fine!
- Our team will continue to disinfect of all hard surfaces that are touched throughout the day. These include all door handles, light switches, etc.
- If you will be receiving treatment, you will be asked to rinse your mouth with a diluted hydrogen peroxide solution prior to any procedure. The purpose of the rinse is to decrease the number of infectious particles in your mouth.
There are many additional procedural processes that have always been in place for your protection that you may not know about. Some of these are:
- Strict adherence to CDC and OSHA-directed Universal Precautions, which call for protective equipment (gloves, masks, eye protection, etc) to be used and discarded after each patient. Some recent upgrades will be noticeable.
- HEPA filters have been placed in each treatment room and our reception area. These filters are capable of renewing the air in those rooms every 7 minutes.
- High speed evacuation has been added in our hygiene rooms to better trap aerosolized particles from our Cavitron units. You’ll notice a big difference!
- Thorough disinfection with an approved cleaner of every treatment room following every procedure.
- Steam autoclave sterilization of instruments used for procedures that is monitored every run for successful sterilization.
Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends.
Drs. Jim and Janel