Dear Boone Endodontics Patients,
We hope this message finds you in good health and spirits. Our country has been through a lot over the last few months and all of us are looking forward to resuming normalcy. While many things have changed, please note that Boone Endodontic’s commitment to safety and quality care remains of paramount importance.
What is our commitment to your safety?
Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and team members safe.
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 in addition to the American Association of Endodontists (AAE), 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 the recommendations of each agency. Boone Endodontics has operated safely and effectively throughout the pandemic crisis and will continue to do so, per the mandates of the North Carolina Dental Society and the North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners.
What are some changes I may see at my next appointment?
We have made modifications to our already stringent sterilization and infection control policies and procedures per the guidance of the ADA, CDC, OSHA and AAE.
Our response to COVID-19 is both comprehensive and meticulous. We have implemented the following changes to help protect our patients and team members:
- Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again once at the office.
- When you arrive at the office, we ask that you remain in your car and call our office to let us know you have arrived. Please remain in your car until our team member is ready to meet you. At that time, we will take your temperature and ask screening questions again before entering the office.
- All patients are asked to wear a mask or cloth face covering to their appointment until they are seated in their private operatory.
- We have hand sanitizer that we would like you to use when you enter the office. As always, you will continue to find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.
- You may notice plexiglass barriers that have been installed at our reception check in and check out areas.
- You will notice that our reception area has limited seating and we will no longer offer magazines, since they are difficult to clean and disinfect.
- We will be modifying our scheduling and minimizing the number of people entering our office at any given time. That may mean that you are offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.
What is the new check in process?
We have temporarily changed our check in process. When you arrive at the office, please call from your car to let us know you have arrived. Please remain in your car until a team member meets you outside. Our team member will ask you screening questions and your temperature will be taken before you enter the office. At this time, we are only allowing you, the patient, in the building. Other family members are asked to wait for you in the car.
Will someone be allowed to accompany an elder patient or child for his or her appointment?
Children and elderly patients will be allowed one person in the room to have consents signed. However, they will not be allowed in the operatory during treatment. This policy is in place out of an abundance of concern for your health, as well as that of the other patients being seen in our office, our team members, and our communities.
What screening questions will I be asked?
Although these screening questions may change at any given time, here is a current example:
- Do you have a fever or have you felt hot or feverish recently (14-21 days)?
- Are you having shortness of breath or other difficulties breathing?
- Do you have a cough?
- Any other flu-like symptoms, such as gastrointestinal upset, headache or fatigue?
- Have you experienced recent loss of taste or smell?
- Are you in contact with any confirmed COVID-19 positive patients, or anyone currently being tested for COVID-19?
- Have you traveled internationally, on a cruise ship or riverboat, or to New York in the past 14 days?
- If you have travelled domestically in the past 14 days, where did you travel?
What are some ways that the office is being sanitized and being cleaned between patients?
- We have engaged our entire team in additional infection control training and supplemental ongoing training related to COVID-19
- As always, we continue to sanitize all surfaces in the treatment room following treatment of each patient, using hospital grade disinfectant.
- Light handles, computer equipment, and dental chairs are wrapped in plastic barriers and are changed, and then disinfected between each appointment.
- All common touch surfaces including those surfaces found in the reception area, front desk, and bathrooms are sanitized repeatedly throughout the day. Disinfectant spray is also utilized throughout the entire office. All disinfectants utilized have been approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for use against SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent for COVID-19.
What are other measures we have implemented for our commitment to patient and team member safety?
Boone Endodontics has implemented extra steps and upgrades to help ensure the safety of our patients and team:
- In addition to obtaining patient temperatures, we are also asking all team members to take their temperatures and answer a health questionnaire daily.
- We have invested in new HEPA filters in all of the air return units.
- For each treatment room, we have invested in an air-purifying unit, which also contains a HEPA filter.
- We have always used the rubber dam for our root canal treatment procedures and we will continue to do so. The use of the rubber dam has been shown to greatly reduce the aerosols during a dental procedure.
- We have upgraded our personal protective equipment for our team. Our front office team members will be wearing masks. Our clinical team members will be wearing gloves, masks, gowns, and protective eyewear or face shields during the procedure.
We thank you in advance and extend our gratitude for your understanding and cooperation. Together, we can help keep everyone as safe and healthy as possible. If you have any questions regarding any of the above, please do not hesitate to ask one of our team members. Thank you for your trust and confidence in our practice. Boone Endodontics is looking forward to making your root canal treatment experience a positive one.
The Boone Endodontics Team