The American Dental Association mandates dentists to offer only emergency care to their patients amid the coronavirus pandemic. Infection control is the catch phrase. So let me share what I am doing, and have been doing for years to assure public safety.
In response to the outbreak, Infection control procedures are actions taken in health care settings to prevent the spread of disease. The CDC has recommendations for dental office infection control. Your dentist cares about your safety and works hard to prevent the spread of infection. So, here is what we are doing every day during the pandemic to assure your safety while addressing your emergency dental needs at the same time.
Before you enter the examining room, all surfaces, such as the dental chair, dental light, drawer handles and countertops, have been cleaned and disinfected. We also cover some equipment with protective covers, which are replaced after each patient.
Our sterilization protocol is superb! We perform every week a spore test to assure the sterilizer is operating properly. We also keep a weekly log going back years to track and assure that all instruments have been sterilized properly to CDC guidelines. The tests are sent to an accredited lab for results. This assures and comforts our patients that we are ahead of any issues that may present themselves, like a coronavirus or SARS. We use the Midmark M11 ultraclave. I feel this is simply the best in the market and have invested in these units years ago, well before any pandemic fears.
Non-disposable items like our dental tools are cleaned and sterilized between patients. We use alcohol based chemicals recommended by the CDC and detergents of the highest brands to scrub and clean the instruments before sterilizing them in the M11 units. Disposable dental tools and needles are never reused. Infection control precautions also require all dental staff involved in patient care to use appropriate protective equipment such as gloves, masks, scrub top and eyewear when needed. After each patient, disposable gloves and masks are thrown away. Before seeing the next patient, everyone on the treatment team washes their hands and put on a new pair of gloves.
Your well-being is important to your dentist and dental staff. That’s why infection control procedures are in place at our dental office.
What about the new corona virus?
On March 16, 2020, the ADA issued the following guidance to dentists regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The American Dental Association (ADA) recognizes the unprecedented and extraordinary circumstances dentists and all health care professionals face related to growing concern about COVID-19. The ADA is deeply concerned for the health and well-being of the public and the dental team. In order for dentistry to do its part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the ADA recommends dentists nationwide postpone elective procedures for the next three weeks. Concentrating on emergency dental care will allow us to care for our emergency patients and alleviate the burden that dental emergencies would place on hospital emergency departments. As health care professionals, it is up to dentists to make well-informed decisions about their patients and practices. The ADA is committed to provide the latest information to the profession."
Dr. Anthony Del Vecchio
1983 Crompond Road Suite 101
Cortlandt Manor, NY 10567