Safety Measures During COVID-19
Thank you for choosing North Shore & Brookline Endodontics (NSBENDO). Your dentist has referred you to our practice because we can help save your tooth. Our dentists have the knowledge, experience, and technology to achieve the best possible outcome and provide a simple, anxiety-free procedure. At NSBENDO, we care about your safety and work hard to prevent the spread of infection. This page explains the safety measures our practice has incorporated to keep you safe during COVID-19.
Safety Topics Covered Below:
- Training & Educating Our Team
- Patient Screening Safety Measures
- Reception Area Preparation & Safety Measures
- Clinical Area Preparation & Safety Measures
- Addition of Electric Fogger Sprayer
- Referring Doctors: Safety Measures
- Patient Screening Form
1. Training and Educating Our Team
At NSBENDO, one of the most important things we are doing during this time is to train and educate our staff on protocols and techniques to prevent the spread of infection:
- Every year, our team completes training in OSHA, HIPAA and Infection Control. During this pandemic, they have completed refresher training in proper hand washing techniques, decontamination of instruments and disinfecting potentially contaminated surfaces.
- Our team has completed additional training in the appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) while caring for patients, as well as performing housekeeping duties, to prevent contamination.
- We are also implementing a strict face mask protocol. All team members will be required to wear a face mask in the clinical and front desk areas. The only time they are not required to wear a mask is in kitchens and private offices where a six-foot distance can be maintained.
- We have created recommendations and requirements for our team to follow so that they arrive to work healthy and go home to their families without worry.
- We encourage our team members to stay home if they are not feeling well, or if someone in their home is ill. In addition, employees complete an Employee Screening upon office arrival each day, including temperature checks. Employees with an elevated temperature of 100.4 F and above, understand they will be sent home immediately.
- Schedules will limit the number of doctors, employees and patients to facilitate social distancing within the office and among team members. All waiting rooms and lunch rooms have been modified to accommodate social distancing.
- At this time, there is no FDA approved Coronavirus Diagnostic Test that is widely available. If these tests become available, we are strongly considering testing our employees.
2. Patient Screening Safety Measures
At NSBENDO, we care about the safety of our patients and team members and work hard to prevent the spread of infection. To minimize the exposure to COVID-19, we are performing patient screenings.
- Pre-Appointment Screenings are performed for every patient prior to scheduling an appointment. Each patient is asked questions in regards to our Patient Screening Form. Any positive responses would indicate a deeper discussion with the dentist before scheduling an appointment.
- Patients are encouraged to reschedule their appointment if they develop symptoms of a respiratory infection prior to, or on the day they are scheduled to be seen.
- High-risk patients (immune compromised, over 60 years old, etc) will be offered early morning appointments among other accommodations.
- Schedules will limit the number of doctors, employees and patients to facilitate social distancing. Patients are reminded that in order to maintain social distancing, we are asking that all companions wait in the car. Guardians, translators and service animals are the only exception.
- Patients are encouraged to fill out their paperwork online, prior to their appointment, to limit the amount of time spent in the waiting room.
- Patients are required by law to arrive at their appointment wearing a face mask, but will be provided one if not.
- Patients are required to fill out a Patient Screening Form upon arrival, in order to ensure nothing has changed since their initial phone call, which includes a temperature check. Patients with an elevated temperature of 100.4 F and above will be required to reschedule their appointment.
- In the event of unforeseen wait times, patients will be asked to wait in their car until we call and text them.
3. Reception Area Preparation & Safety Measures
At NSBENDO, we provide you with prompt attention, high-quality care, and-most of all-respect. We are asking our patients to help us prevent the spread of infection and maintain social distancing.
- Front entrance office signage has been installed to warn patients of Potential COVID-19 Risk as well as No Entry if Symptoms Present.
- A Hand Sanitizing Station has been installed at the front entrance of the office to be used prior to check-in and entry into the waiting room.
- Masks are REQUIRED for ALL NSBENDO Team, Patients and Guests.
- Waiting Room signage has been installed to promote proper Hand Hygiene, Respiratory Hygiene, Cough Etiquette and Disposal of Tissues.
- Waiting Rooms and Bathrooms are equipped with hand sanitizers, soap at sinks, tissues and trash cans.
- Waiting Rooms have been decluttered and all unnecessary communal objects have been removed.
- Waiting rooms have been modified to accommodate social distancing, including limited seating and installation of physical barriers. In addition, no additional guests are allowed in the waiting room.
- NSBENDO logo pens are given to patients for appointment use. Patients can decide to keep or discard after use. If office brand pens are not available, reusable pens will be disinfected after each use.
- On a regular schedule, NSBENDO wipes all touchable surface areas with an EPA approved surface cleaner. This includes doors, counters, tables, chair arms, light switches, hangers, communal objects and anything else with which people come in contact.
4. Clinical Area Preparation & Safety Measures
At NSBENDO, we work in an environment that exceeds the exacting standards of sterilization, cleanliness and patient security advocated by the ADA, the CDC, OSHA and BORID.
- Recently, our team has completed refresher training in proper hand washing techniques, decontamination of instruments, disinfecting potentially contaminated surfaces and appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) while caring for patients.
- Operatories and Laboratories are stocked with the necessary PPE, including lab jackets, masks, gloves, goggles and face shields.
- Operatory signage has been installed to promote proper Hand Hygiene, Respiratory Hygiene, Cough Etiquette and Disposal of Tissues.
- Operatories and Bathrooms have been decluttered and all unnecessary communal objects have been removed. These areas are also equipped with hand sanitizers, soap at sinks, tissues and trash cans.
- On a regular schedule, we decontaminate all touchable surface areas with an EPA approved surface cleaner. This includes doors, counters, tables, chair arms, light switches, hangers, communal objects and anything else with which people come in contact.
- Before and after every patient’s appointment, operatories are properly disinfected with an EPA approved surface cleaner. We also prepare each operatory with sterilized instruments and appropriate barriers.
- Patients are required to wear a mask until seated in the dental chair and goggles are provided to the patient for appropriate eye protection.
- At NSBENDO, we care about your safety and work hard to prevent the spread of infection. Working with your dentist, the doctors and staff are committed to providing you exceptional endodontic and oral health care.
5. Addition of Electric Fogger Sprayer
Foggers allow our practice to easily sanitize an entire room with just the push of a button. When used, a propellant inside the fogger triggers the release of a fine mist of powerful, disinfecting contents that disperse throughout the room, eliminating germs, bacteria, and other harmful microorganisms on everything the fog touches.
No Harsh Chemicals, Safe to Use Everyday
The active ingredient in the fogging disinfectant is Hypochlorous Acid (HOCl), which is amongst the long list of EPA approved disinfectants. Different levels of HOCl can be found in eyedrops, food sanitizers and wound cleaners.
Fogging Protocol & Safety Measures
The process of fogging is a final step to cleaning after our normal cleaning routine is complete. It does not replace cleaning but disinfects the air and hard to reach places.
- Waiting rooms, bathrooms and clinical operatories are decontaminated and fogged at set times throughout the day.
- Prior to fogging, all touchable surface areas are decontaminated with an EPA approved surface cleaner, including doors, counters, tables, chair arms, light switches, communal objects and anything else with which people come in contact.
- Employees are properly trained in fogging and disinfecting protocols.
- During fogging and disinfecting areas, employees are required to wear a mask, goggles and gloves while decontaminating and fogging rooms.
- The waiting rooms, bathrooms and clinical operatories are cleared of all patients and employees prior to fogging.
- When in use, the fogger is sprayed in the air of each room for 2-3 minutes, then allowed to set for 3-5 minutes prior to use.
- All decontamination and fogging times in the waiting room and bathrooms are documented and posted for inspection by our patients.
6. Referring Doctors: Safety Message
For over 60 years, our reputation for clinical skill and professionalism has led trusted local dentists to refer their patients to our practice. We appreciate the trust you put in our practice every time you refer a patient to North Shore & Brookline Endodontics.
- YOUR PARTNERS IN PATIENT CARE: We work hard to exceed expectations so that when your patients return to you, they are grateful for your referral and understand the importance of continuing general care with your office.
- HEALTH & SAFETY MEASURES: We work in an environment that exceeds the exacting standards of sterilization, cleanliness and patient security advocated by the American Dental Association, the CDC, OSHA and HIPAA. We also adhere to the strict guidelines set forth by the BORID.
- REFERRALS: We encourage you to submit an Electronic Referral Form when referring patients to our practice. Once the form is submitted, it is emailed immediately to our practice. This allows us to expect the patient’s call and contact the patient if needed. The referral form can be printed for your patient as well as downloaded for appropriate record keeping. Electronic Referral Form can be found at https://www.nsbendo.com/referring-doctors/.
- APPOINTMENTS: We encourage you to appoint the patient to our office for the consultation or treatment while the patient is still in your office. This way we can get your patient the earliest and most convenient appointment time possible.
- PROFESSIONAL RELATIONS DIRECTORS: Carli DeGirolamo (North Shore) and Inna Keller (Brookline) will contact your office regularly to ensure a rewarding and supportive professional relationship and seamless patient care. They are knowledgeable in all aspects of our office procedures and safety measures. Their goal is to ensure that you always have a readily available resource and a friendly connection to our practice.
- PREFERENCES: We want to make sure we facilitate the patient coming to our office and going back to your office in a smooth and efficient manner. Please let us know if you have any preferences or requests.