We hope you and your families are managing to keep well and safe in these uncertain times.
We are seeing all our private patients for a full range of treatments - by appointment only. In the meantime, we have made changes within the practice to create the safest possible environment and treatment flow for our patients.
Please do not attend without an appointment.
Will we be carrying out all treatments?
We are carrying out the full range of treatments, however we are allocating longer appointments between Aerosol-Generating Procedure (AGPs) to allow us to thoroughly clean and fog the surgery to create a safe environment for the next patient who comes in. As a result, we are also minimising the footfall of patients through the practice, to allow us to maintain the recommended social distancing, and to keep us all safe.
What is an AGP?
- An Aerosol Generating Procedure (AGP) is a procedure which is recognised as creating the highest risk of transmission of respiratory viruses
- AGPs include use of an air turbine (dental drill) and ultrasonic scalers (the high-pitched scaling instrument commonly used by hygienists)
- Use of enhanced respiratory protective equipment is indicated for health workers performing or assisting in such procedures
What are we doing differently?
We have always taken infection control very seriously at Tavistock House. The recent pandemic has meant that we have had to adapt to the current situation and create new protocols to keep our patients and staff safe. For example:
- There is a new “one way” pathway through the practice and we have changed our facilities to allow you to maintain the recommended “social distancing”. You will be asked to enter through the “front” of the practice (on Tring Road) and when you leave, you will be guided to the back of the practice, to the car park. You can still park your car as per usual in our car park at the rear of the practice and this remains free for all of our patients to use
- We are checking the temperature of all staff members and patients as they enter the building. Anyone with a temperature over 37.5ºC will be asked to go home and self-isolate for 14 days, as per the government’s recommendation
- We have invested in screens at reception and in the surgery, new drills and suction units are now being used which have been shown to reduce the production of aerosols, and antimicrobial-filled fogging machines are used after every AGP (Aerosol Generating Procedure) to neutralise any airborne viruses, thereby minimising the risk of viral transmission between patients and staff
- We will be wearing clean surgical gowns, surgical hats and FFP masks for each and every AGP
- Treatment appointments will be longer than usual, to allow us to thoroughly air through, disinfect, and fog each surgery between patients
- We are seeing fewer patients each day and staff have been redistributed within the practice in new roles to keep you safe
What will you need to do differently?
- We ask that you attend only if you have made a prior appointment with us
- We ask that you attend 5 minutes early, through the front (Tring Road) entrance of the building, for us to check your temperature and run through a few health questions
- If you are, or have recently been, demonstrating symptoms of COVID-19, you will need to self-isolate for 2 weeks and we will rebook your appointment
- We politely request that you attend alone (unless you need a chaperone); for children under 16, please attend with 1 parent only (with no siblings!)
Will you be able to book a check-up?
- We are booking appointments for check-ups
- If you have not been seen at the practice for 6 months or more, we would most likely want to carry out a full mouth examination prior to carrying out any treatment, in order to plan treatment so as to minimise the number of return visits you would need to make
Will you be able to book a hygienist appointment?
- We have allocated additional hygienist sessions to ensure that everyone who wants an appointment will have a better chance of being seen sooner
- Please note that hygienists are presently carrying out hand scaling only (in addition to polishing teeth). Use of the ultrasonic scaler has ceased until further notice as this is regarded as an AGP (Aerosol Generating Procedure) and is not considered to be an essential part of your hygienist appointment.
We look forward to seeing you again soon at Tavistock House. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have about the steps we are taking keep you, as a patient, safe.
As always, thank you for allowing us to continue to look after your dental needs.
The Team at Tavistock House