COVID-19 Respiratory Protection: How We Keep You Safe
At Tompkins Family Dental Group, your well-being is our priority. Although we have always maintained and exceeded OSHA standards in our daily sterilization and disinfection procedures, we have adopted extra precautions, in light of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
While you will still receive the same exemplary service from our dedicated team, you will notice some changes to our office and implementations to each patient appointment, which includes the following:
- Pre-Appointment Patient Wellness Screening: We screen all patients for any flu-like symptoms, domestic or international travel by plane, and any known COVID-19 positive contacts, within the last 14 days prior to their appointments. This will be again upon arrival. All patients will have their Temperatures taken with a no-contact thermometer to ensure they are fever-free.
- New Check-in Process: Call us when you arrive to our parking lot for your appointment to review your wellness screening. We will instruct you to head into our office when we are ready to receive you, ensuring all sterilization and disinfection protocol has been completed, while also minimizing patient-patient contact.
- New Waiting Room Protocol: Effective immediately, we ask all patients to arrive individually to adopt a no-waiting room protocol. All companions are asked to return to their vehicles, to optimize patient and staff safety. Arrangements for a parent/guardian of a small child or special-needs patient will be made.
- HEPA Filtration Units: An air purifier equipped with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air)-rated filter can help capture airborne virus-sized particles. Such units have been placed in all treatment rooms and the patient waiting room. Once trapped, viruses cannot multiply on their own or remain infectious for long. Think of this as an “N95” made for a room.
- UV Germicidal Light Disinfection: After each patient leaves, all rooms will be disinfected with UV Germicidal light disinfection. The high-frequency wavelengths emitted from such units are lethal to viruses, bacteria and other germs. Such units are even regularly used in Hospital ICU rooms for this reason. This will be used in addition to our medical-grade disinfectants and typical disinfection protocols.
- Office Barrier Installations: We’ve installed temporary plexiglass barriers separating our waiting room from the front desk and treatment area. This physical barrier can help minimize contact and aerosol-transmission.
- Maximum PPE for Staff and Patients Too: Our staff will be equipped with N95s/level 3 surgical masks, face-shields, surgical gowns/lab coats, scrub caps, and double-gloves. All patients will receive masks upon arrival to our office.
- Minimal Overlap Between Patients: Our staff is working diligently to space out appointments between patients to ensure no overlap. Additionally, internally, our office will be implementing a ‘rotating room’ schedule to maximize time between usage of the same rooms in a single day.
- High-Vac Excavation during Dental Treatment and Cleanings: Our goal will be to minimize and control aerosolization—the air suspension of water and saliva droplets—during your appointment. While your dentist and hygienist will adopt different strategies to accomplish this, our office will encourage your use of a high-vacuum suctioning mouthpiece that will continuously suction saliva and air throughout your dental treatment AND dental cleaning appointments.