Whilst the Government has reinforced their plans to relax Covid restrictions in England from Monday 19th July some guidance remains in place, not least that people should:
- Meet others outside where possible
- Wear face coverings (unless exempt) including in health care and crowded public settings such as public transport
- Regularly test, isolating when positive
The national Infection Prevention Control guidance has not changed and at Smile Together we will not be lifting any of our current restrictions as it remains our utmost priority to protect our patients and our people. The Government have been clear – everybody needs to continue to act carefully and remain cautious, and this is why we are keeping in place our key protections.
This means three things for patients:
- If you need to come into the surgery for an appointment, please remember that social distancing remains in place in the dental practice and to wear a face covering upon entering the building
- We will continue to have restrictions on leaving time between patients to ventilate rooms if we perform an aerosol generating procedure (AGP). An AGP is a medical procedure that can result in the release of airborne particles (aerosols) from the respiratory tract when treating someone and in dentistry, for example, this means the use of something like a high speed drill. This impacts how many patients we can fit into a working day
- We are also following the Chief Dental Officer’s advice that we should prioritise patients for treatment based on urgency and priority groups, such as those more at risk of dental disease or children
Similar public health measures are still in place for hospitals and GP practices, too.
Covid will clearly be a feature of our lives for the foreseeable future so we need to learn to live with it and manage the risk to ourselves and others. Therefore our clinical and professional support teams will be continuing with their current safe practices in the workplace including the wearing of masks and PPE, regularly washing and sanitising hands, calling patients in from our carparks/outside rather than from our waiting rooms, not car-sharing to/from work and working from home where they can etc. Every dental practice is working extremely hard to provide care to our patients within the restrictions and guidance to ensure it’s safe to visit the dentist.
Thank you in advance to our patients and other visitors to our practices for respecting this and adhering to the Covid safety measures that we will continue to adopt across all of our locations.
We will review the situation regularly and relax our measures only when considered safe and appropriate to do so.
Thank you for your understanding, and for current Government guidance, please visit this website.