RE: Resumption of dental services in England
The goal for patients and professionals is to resume the safe and effective provision of the full range of care in all practices, as rapidly as practicable.
In developing this approach, we recognise:
• clear safety standards, including personal protective equipment (PPE) and infection prevention and control (IPC) protocols are required to safely deliver dental care, as recommended by Public Health England (PHE)
• that given the dual impacts of IPC requirements and changed patient behaviour during the pandemic, previous operating volumes will inevitably phase back in
• that remote consultations will continue as part of a practice’s revised operating model
Please do not attend the practice if you do not have an appointment.
Please wear a mask for your appointment (unless exempt) and come alone unless you need a chaperone.
We have been working in partnership with NHS England as an Urgent Dental Centre for our area and this will continue to do so. Any of our own patients requiring urgent dental treatment may still contact us as usual (preferably by email to request a call back from a dentist). email@example.com
In order to get back to “normal” we must phase our approach, not only for patient safety, but staff as well. Over the past month we had started to introduce a lot more routine check-ups and more treatments, including some cosmetic private treatments providing they are non-AGP (which means we do not need to drill, such as composite bonding and lip fillers).
We had started to re-introduce a lot more routine check-ups to patients in the order in which they were cancelled starting in March. This proved to be impractical and we have had to make the decision to not cut back a lot of routine check-ups in order to protect our social distancing policies, therefore cancelling some that had been made.
However, as part of the transition back to normal care, we will now be accepting patients who wish to come into to the practice by booking them an appointment (regardless of severity of pain as in phase 1) – we will simply be spreading out the appointments even more than we were and making them longer to ensure distancing in waiting rooms.
We are encouraging the following patients to attend:
- Patients with active gum disease (at this time we will not be able to deep clean teeth due to COVID-19 protocols). We will assist you with hand scaling and highlighting the areas you are missing.
- Continuation of denture work, crown work and crown repairs where eating/talking is causing you a problem.
- Patients in discomfort
- Patients who wish to have an appointment
Whilst you wait for an appointment, we have articles on oral hygiene and handy tips on our website you can read here.
Previous advice that is still in effect:
- Guidance will set out that individuals will still be asked to self-isolate for 7 days from the onset of COVID-19 symptoms but any individuals in the household will now be asked to self-isolate for 14 days from that moment as well. (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-guidance-for-households-with-possible-covid-19-infection)
- Check the government website for travel information and if you need to isolate.
- Anyone with a high temperature or continuous cough who is UNWELL should go to NHS111 online first for advice, rather than approaching their GP practice or pharmacy (111.nhs.uk/covid-19)
- This applies to staff as well as patients
Emergency appointments for people with COVID-19 or symptoms will be referred to a specialist dental centre.
- You may email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to request a call back for triage
- We are being sent urgent patients referred to us from the emergency dental services for our area as part of our Local Urgent Dental Care system.
The Emergency Dental Services number for non-registered patients is
0300 1234 010
When routine dental care resumes later in the year, it is ultimately the patients responsibility to book an appointment. Our best efforts have been made to move patients appointments to later in the year, so that you remain registered. Any patient who does not attend the practice within a 2 year period for a check-up will be de-registered.