Impact of COVID-19 Activity Upon Dental Practices and StarKlinics

This last week we have seen 9 new patients cancel.

We have managed to keep the majority of booked treatments, with 2 cancellations the majority of reasons are due to slight cold symptoms.

The industry as a whole has implemented practical protocols and policies regarding both staff sickness and patient illness.

We request that all patients with any symptoms of cold, flu, fever and/or sneezing do not enter the practice.

We request that all patients that have travelled outside of Australia leave their appointments until at least 14 days from arrival in Australia.

All our protocols and procedures for cross infection are hospital grade, therefore in addition we have implemented the following guidelines.

Calling patients prior to their appointment and ask if they have travelled overseas in the past 14 days, if they feel unwell including but limited to symptoms of COVID-19 such as fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath.

We will also ask if they have had any contact with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

If the patient answers YES to any of these questions we advise them that we cannot provide routine dental care and reschedule their appointment for 14 days after their last travel or contact with COVID-19, or their symptoms have resolved.

In the waiting room we have removed any unnecessary items, regularly wipe down surfaces with hospital grade disinfectants, place a cough etiquette and respiratory hygiene poster in a visible position.

At StarKlinics we will review a dental emergency case if the patient has flu/cold symptoms over the telephone.

If the patient is unwell or considered high risk or there is severe pain with swelling, we will be able to provide antibiotics.

We ask that all patients attend by themselves and that any other family members or friends remain at home.

If a driver is required then the patient is dropped off and we will call their driver to return once the appointment is complete.

Constant use of hospital TGA approved disinfectants are used regularly to wipe down any communal areas and after each person has attended the practice.

StarKlinics is a different type of dental practice in that we are able to carry out full mouth rehabilitation in one visit.

Therefore, we see far fewer patients in a single day.

Sometimes only one patient will be present all day, significantly decreasing risk.

Other dental practices with higher turnover would be at a higher risk.

If they are in areas of need with multiple bookings it is likely that most patients would need to remain in their cars and telephone the practice upon arrival to make certain they are not exhibiting symptoms before entering the dental practice with the use of pre appointment questionaries.

At StarKlinics we request that immediately all patients upon entering our practice use the hand sanitiser available.

If you have any questions or would like to chat with us please call on 07 5560 9575

Article by Dr Kate Stark –  Director StarKlinics Dental Clinic 

DR Kate Stark Dentist & Director StarKlinics Gold Coast Dr Kate Stark – Dentist & Director at StarKlinics Dental.

Dr Kate Stark is a committed dental practitioner who is passionate about digital dental technologies.
Kate graduated in 2005 from Guy’s King’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals Kings College London.
Kate is Dentist and director of StarKlinics, a dental medical and training facility on the Gold Coast.