Important Information About COVID-19

  Watercolor by Nora Aliff, age 10

In recognition of ongoing news reports and the continued spread of the COVID-19 virus, we realize our patients have questions. As dedicated health care professionals, we want you to know that we remain as diligent as ever in protecting the health and safety of our patients and staff. We understand that these are remain uncertain times, however, we feel that it is important to not delay the diagnosis and treatment of your child’s dental health any longer than absolutely necessary.  We are happy to provide the appropriate care and prevention even as we are still recovering from this pandemic.  Children’s Dentistry strictly adheres to and exceeds the standards for infection control by wearing personal protective gear, using hospital-grade disinfectants, practicing the latest sterilization protocols, utilizing single-use disposable materials, and more. Every effort we have in place is to ensure the safety of our patients and staff. We want you to know that we are monitoring this situation very closely, and we will keep you updated regularly.

We are currently working behind the scenes to ensure that our May 11, 2020 reopening is safe and smooth for patients, families, and staff.  We are getting guidance from local, state, and national officials with specific directives.

Please note that as a result of COVID-19, we have updated some of our daily procedures, changed scheduling and have different processes in place. All of these changes will stay in effect for the foreseeable future. Your child and their experience will still be our main focus, however, to ensure the safety of all patients we’ve implemented the following changes:

Your next office visit

1.  We are going to carefully screen each patient.  This means you must complete the COVID-19 patient pre-screening questionnaire, the Supplemental Informed Consent for COVID-19 and updated Health History when you confirm the appointment.  We will reserve your appointment time once we have determined that the patient is not symptomatic and is at low risk for the coronavirus.  These forms are best filled out on-line using the following link: https://forms.patientconnect365.com/7052.  

2.  We ask that once you arrive please call the office 304-345-0541 and inform us that you have arrived.  Parking spaces are marked with a number. Let us know what space you are in and a member of our staff will come out and greet you.  This will aid in social distancing and reduce surfaces touched by patients in the building.  We will be bringing patients into the building according to their needs and this may be different from the order that  you arrive.  Please be patient because your appointment may take longer than previous appointments you have had with us.

3.  The COVID-19 patient pre-screening questionnaire will be reviewed and updated and a patient temperature will be taken prior to being escorted to a treatment room.  The thermometer is an infrared model that doesn’t require touching the patient.  If the patient has a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher then we will need to reschedule their appointment after 14 days.

4. Each patient will have their own room and, as is always the case, each room will be appropriately disinfected before and after each patient.  The rooms are going to be colder than usual.  Please have your child dressed in layers so that they can be comfortable. We have temporarily stopped using blankets for patients to eliminate any transmission risks.

5. We will review the treatment plan and obtain parental consent prior to starting.  During this time of increased safety measures we ask that only one person accompany each patient, and only if necessary due to age or behavior.  This escort will be required to wear a mask (please bring your own mask if possible) and face shield while in the building.  Masks and face shields are in extremely short supply and must be conserved whenever possible.  To reduce your risk, if you elect to return to your car, we have texting capabilities at each computer in the treatment rooms and will be able to provide you with updates.

6. At the completion of the treatment we will reschedule your next appointment and complete payment in the treatment room or remotely if you have elected to stay in your car.  This also aids in social distancing and limits points of contact for each family.

7. Our staff will look a bit different from what you and your child may be accustomed to.  Please explain this to your child prior to the visit.  We will be wearing increased personal protective equipment (PPE) in the interest of safety.  These items are in high demand and supplies are limited due to the worldwide health crisis.  Please understand if patient care must be delayed because of lack of proper PPE, we are doing everything possible of our end to secure these items.  Safety of patients and staff will not be compromised.

8. Our office environment will be changed as well.  We have removed many items, added protective coverings so that items may be cleaned with higher strength chemicals with greater frequency, and eliminated as many points of contact as possible.  All inside doors will remain open.  Touched surfaces will be labeled “used” or “clean” when possible.  Regularly touched surfaces will have plastic barriers that will be changed between uses.  

9.  We have hired an outside commercial company to assist with products related to cleaning and sanitizing in an effort to decrease the staff’s contact with contaminated items.

10.  We have installed automatic dispensers for hand washing and hand sanitizing throughout the office for your safety and convenience. We have also installed signs to remind everyone of the importance of hand hygiene in stopping the spread of the virus.  Our outside commercial company will make sure that this is replenished when needed.

11.  We have completed continuing education courses regarding updated sterilization techniques and best practices during a pandemic, specifically related to cleaning our instruments in our lab.  These changes in our sterilization processes will enhance the safety of your care.

12. We have installed multiple air scrubbers in our heating and cooling system to improve air quality.  These scrubbers contain ActivePure Technology to destroy up to 99% of all surface and airborne contaminates.  This system uses light waves and a catalytic process to produce scrubber ions that travel through the duct work treating and purifying the entire space.  Although this has not been tested yet on COVID-19, it has been tested on other viruses and proven effective.

Again, thank you so much for your support. We’re happy to continue serving you, and can’t wait to see your smile!
 

Facts

Symptoms of coronavirus are reported as flu-like, with varying degrees of severity. While we do not know everything about this virus to date, individuals who are elderly and/or immunocompromised appear to be the most at risk of a severe infection. The links below provide more detailed information.  To ensure your health and safety, and the health and safety of everyone at our practice, please reschedule your appointment if you or a member of your household has a cough, fever, and/or flu-like symptoms. In addition, please reschedule your appointment if you have traveled to any areas within the past 14 days that are at high risk for contracting the coronavirus.

We thank you in advance and extend our gratitude for your understanding and cooperation during this pandemic. Together, we can help keep everyone as safe and healthy as possible. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our office, and one of our staff members will be more than happy to assist you.

Please view and share our latest COVID-19 Symptom Comparison Chart with your friends and family.

For further information, including measures to keep yourself healthy, visit the following links: