May 6, 2020
No matter where you live in the world, social distancing has become a “new way of life.” With state officials strongly discouraging private gatherings of more than 10 people while slowly beginning to lift restrictions on businesses, parks, and other public areas, you may be wondering how it’s possible to maintain this type of distance, especially while receiving dental care. Your dentist in Hutchinson explains how, with your help, it’s being accomplished safely and effectively.
Turning Your Vehicle Into a Waiting Room
Want to listen to your favorite song just a bit longer? Need to make a quick phone call but don’t want to bother anyone else? Because of the new guidelines your dentist is implementing, your car is now being referred to as a “virtual waiting room.” Instead of entering the dentist’s office and sitting in the lobby until your appointment time, most dental offices are now asking patients to alert the front desk of their arrival while remaining in the vehicle. Once it is time to come in, a member of the staff will escort you from your car to a treatment room.
Allowing More Time Between Patients
Instead of having 3 or 4 clients arrive for a 2:00 p.m. appointment, your dentist in Hutchinson is spacing out scheduling to allow for more time between patients. Not only does this minimize the number of people seen in one day and decrease the potential risk of COVID-19, but it also gives staff additional time to thoroughly sanitize and clean treatment rooms and equipment before the next individual arrives.
Limiting the Number of People Treated Each Day
While a majority of dental professionals hate the idea of placing a cap on the number of people that can be seen in a single day, it is necessary right now because of its ability to minimize how much contact occurs between staff and patients. Although strict measures are being taken to ensure all dental team members are wearing personal protective equipment, harmful bacteria can remain present in exposed areas. The more people you have in a particular location, the higher the potential risk for COVID-19. Remember this as you work with front desk staff to schedule an appointment and try to be flexible when possible.
Generating Space in Waiting Areas
Even if you are expected to wait in your vehicle, there may be necessary times in which you will need to remain in the lobby. If so, you will find that all seating will be 6 feet apart in an effort to abide by social distancing guidelines. Also, all reading materials and self-service beverage machines will no longer be available. Should you desire something to drink, please consume it while remaining in your vehicle before your appointment.
You’re not alone in wishing these social distancing requirements didn’t exist. However, as long as we can work together, we will get through this process and return to a level of normalcy soon enough.
About the Author
Dr. Grant Ringler is like many other dentists throughout the country. Trying to adhere to the protocols set by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), he, along with his staff, are working to maintain social distancing guidelines while providing only the best possible dental care. Using new and innovative ideas as well as general safety precautions, he can ensure all patients that even these standards are easily met as long as everyone works together. Before you arrive at a “dentist near me” for your next appointment, make sure to visit our website or call (620) 669-0835 to learn what you can do to help Dr. Ringler and his team maintain proper social distancing procedures.
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