We just wanted to take a few minutes to update you all on what’s currently happening here at Highlands Ranch Family Dental!
As I mentioned in my previous emails, on March 17 the CDC recommended suspending all routine dental care in a continued effort to flatten the curve with regard to the spread of COVID-19. This recommendation has expired as of April 27. I’m sure many of you are also aware of the state’s transition to “safer at home” rules starting April 27. Given these changes, we have made the decision to resume elective dental care starting May 4th.
We are excited to be able to get back to taking care of our patients, but recognize this comes with great responsibility and the realization our operations at this time will not return to exactly what they were prior to March 17. I wanted to get this message out so all our patients know what to expect when coming to our office as well as to explain some of the processes and procedures we’ve implemented in an effort to keep our patients and staff members as safe as possible.
Due to guidelines we are limited to the amount of people allowed in our office at one time, this number includes staff members. During this time we are making some temporary changes to our office hours and the amount of staff we are using. We know this may inconvenience many of our patients but with PPE requirements and the difficultly in getting these required pieces of equipment we need to make sure we meet all requirements given by the government. One major ADA/CDA mandate given to us is to limit aerosols in the dental office to emergent care! This has forced our dental hygiene department to completely reformat how they handle dental cleanings. The use of an ultrasonic scaler and polishing after your cleaning will NOT be used. Again, we apologize for this inconvenience but this is out of our control at this time.
1. Please do not come early to your appointment! Our office door will be propped open, if you see someone at the front desk, please ensure you are keeping the social distancing guidelines or wait outside till you are welcomed into the office. Patients are not allowed to bring guests or companions to their appointments except for a minor that may be accompanied by 1 parent/guardian! It is our responsibility to limit the number of people in our office at one time, so if you require a companion or driver, they will be asked to wait outside or in the car. We apologize in advance, but this has to be mandatory in order for us to return to routine care appointments.
2. All of our staff and doctors will be required to wear a mask at all times. All patients will also be required to wear a mask/covering to and from their appointment. You can remove them once you are in your assigned room. There will be no exceptions. Patients not wearing masks will be asked to reschedule. I apologize, but due to the lack of availability and high cost for medical masks, we will not have masks available to give to those who do not have one.
3. We will have hand sanitizer at the front desk. It will be required to use hand sanitizer immediately upon entering the office. We are hoping to have the auto dispenser available but if not a staff member will dispense for you or you may bring your own.
4. One of our staff members will be taking temperatures with a non-contact thermometer for every person upon entering the office. Anyone with a temperature of 100.0 or higher will be asked to reschedule/leave the office.
5. All paperwork will be online, if you do not have access to our website and online forms a staff member can help you with online forms once you are taken to your room.
6. Our normal routine already consists of thorough cleaning and sanitization procedures, but we have implemented even more detailed processes and systems in order to assure all equipment, furniture, door handles, high touch surfaces, etc are cleaned and sanitized after every patient interaction. If possible due to our limited staff we ask that restrooms be used for emergencies only.
7. Our waiting room is pretty much nonexistent. The use of the coffee bar, water dispenser, and sadly our “kids room” is no longer allowed at this time.
8. The “safer at home” order states: “Individuals who are 65 years and older; individuals with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma; individuals who have serious heart conditions; individuals who are immunocompromised; pregnant women; and individuals determined to be high risk by a licensed healthcare provider are considered vulnerable under Executive Order D 2020 044. Vulnerable people at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 should follow Stay-at-Home recommendations, which means only leaving home for necessary medical care and essential activities.” Given this recommendation, we ask all patients in any of these “vulnerable populations” to continue to follow the “stay at home” recommendations and delay routine dental care until the order change.
I recommend visiting https://covid19.colorado.gov/safer-at-home-faq for clarification regarding the current executive orders in the state of Colorado.
Above all, We want to assure you everyone’s health and safety is our top priority. We realize some of these policies and new procedures may feel cumbersome or unnecessary to some, but we ask for your patience and understanding while we adjust to our new routine in implementing them so our business can reopen safely and with all guidelines met. Exceptional customer service and patient satisfaction have always been and will continue to be our standard, but we also recognize there will be some unintended consequences (schedule running behind and limited availability of appointments, etc.) that may be out of our control during this unprecedented time. Again, we just ask for your understanding and patience. I can assure you we are always striving to do our very best. We understand that many of you have been rescheduled multiple times, unfortunately with our industry and the constant changing guidelines we hope we won’t have to continue rescheduling.
We are so excited to see our wonderful patients again! Thank you for your patience, understanding, and loyalty.
George H. Lunn, DDS & Staff
If you need to schedule an appointment please call the office at 303.346.4495 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule online.