COVID-19 Safety Measures
at Okanagan Dentistry
Due to the nature of our closed operatories and large office layout, we feel that we can provide dentistry safely and effectively while minimizing the period of time that we will be in close contact with our patients.
We have made many changes to protect our patients and staff from virus transmission. Although you may find some of these changes inconvenient, they are to protect everyone from the spread of the virus during the pandemic.
All Staff and Patients:
- Daily (or pre-appointment) screening for COVID-19 including travel history, symptoms, and vital signs.
- Nobody with respiratory or flu-like symptoms will be allowed to enter the premises. If you screen positive you will be asked to self-isolate and call 811 to be tested. After the quarantine period your appointment will be rescheduled. In the event of a true dental emergency, arrangements will be made for you to receive emergent treatment in an appropriate setting.
- Masks are to be worn at all times by staff and patients outside of treatment rooms. Patients who are undergoing dental treatment will only remove their mask when necessary to complete treatment.
- Airflow in our building has been enhanced since the beginning of the pandemic by diverting the HVAC system to 100% fresh air – in other words no air is recirculated within our space or through the building. Fresh air enters the building, circulates through the space once and is pumped back out of the building. Although this is not the most efficient way to heat and cool a building, it is the safest way to prevent respiratory droplets from circulating throughout the building.
- All contact surfaces including countertops and door handles will be wiped with commercial grade disinfectant as per the recommendations of the BC College of Dental Surgeons.
- Large plexiglass sneeze guards have been placed in front of every reception terminal to protect patients and staff.
- Spacing between appointments to allow for disinfection and decreased patient interaction.
- Our waiting area has limited, socially distanced seating to prevent anyone waiting from interacting with another person less than 2 metres apart. We are also doing our best to book the schedule so there is a limited number of patients in our waiting room at one given time.
- Public washrooms are located in the hall outside the office for public use. Our building will be utilizing a day porter who will be disinfecting our public spaces with a focus on the bathrooms throughout the day. We encourage you to use the bathrooms prior to entering the office, being sure to practise proper hand hygiene prior to entering the clinic premises. Our staff bathroom is not for public use at this time, to prevent cross-contamination.
- We will do everything possible to avoid contact with another patient by staggering the times that you enter and exit the treatment area.
- Personal protective equipment used during dental treatment will include: face shields, surgical caps, gowns, masks, and gloves.
- A pre-treatment disinfectant rinse will be given to all patients prior to any procedure to minimize viral load in the event that you are an asymptomatic carrier.
- Aerosol generating procedures will be performed using rubber dam isolation wherever possible, using high volume suction at all times to minimize aerosol spread.
- To protect your clothing from exposure, you will be draped with a long disposable cover during aerosol-generating procedures that will be removed and discarded before you leave the operatory.
- Operatories will be disinfected thoroughly as always - all surfaces that cannot be wiped will be removed from the treatment room walls and strict disinfection protocols will be followed between patients.
As always, please contact us at any time if you have any questions or concerns regarding our COVID safety measures.
Your team at Okanagan Dentistry