Hello Dear Friends and Cherished Patients,
I hope that you and all of your loved ones are all doing well, staying healthy and positive during this unprecedented time in our world.
The invisible enemy Covid-19 has affected all of our lives in one form or another. I find myself often reminiscing of how wonderful it was to be able to have simple human interaction with friends and family or just being able to enjoy a new movie at the theater or getting a haircut! Now we are trying to protect ourselves, our elderly and other high-risk people that we love and care about by “social distancing” ourselves from one another. A few air hugs through the window or a wave from afar is now the norm. We have all been on lockdown for what seems like eternity but I have hope that we will all return to a somewhat normal life in the near future.
Fortunately, Minnesota was not affected as hard as other regions. I am proud of our state as we continue to follow the rules and try to do our part in helping to eliminate this virus. But this “enemy” is present and we need to be careful and keep up with all the necessary precautions. In this time of uncertainty, it is very important to all work together to help assure the safety and well-being of everyone.
Gendler Dental has now been closed for elective and routine dental care since March 17th. We did this due to the uncertainty of the virus situation but most of all for the concern and safety of our team members and patients. As essential workers, we have been open for emergency dental care all of this time, doing emergency care for people in pain about 2 days a week.
As May approaches, I am truly hoping that we can open our doors for routine dental operations on May 11th and hygiene on May 14th.
Facing the new reality, we are implementing a few important changes and I would like to inform you of the steps and new procedures that we are taking to assure the utmost safety for everyone. Please bear with us as we are also learning and trying to do everything that we possibly can to make sure that you feel safe and comfortable.
1) You may see that our reception area will no longer offer magazines, coffee and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect. We rearranged the reception area so that all chairs are now 6 feet apart to maintain recommended social distancing.
2) Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you present to the office. We will take a measurement of your temperature and you’ll also be asked to wash your hands and rinse your mouth with a mouth rinse before your appointment.
3) Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. This will be done to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time. This might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment. If you arrive greater than 5 minutes before your appointment time, we ask that you please call the office from your car. Your provider may be available to take you earlier.
4) We will begin to use Telehealth Dentistry. You will be able to find the link on the front page of our web site (www.dentistmn.com) for virtual appointments. It is a very intuitive and an easy to use platform for video conferencing.
5) I want to assure you that we have been practicing all the universal sanitary precautions for a long time. With very stringent guidelines from OSHA, dental offices are truly one of the cleanest places that you will find as we already heavily disinfect all rooms and surfaces, and sterilize instruments before and after all patients. With the situation now, we will be stepping up all of these measures even more.
6) We are installing an additional HEPA filtration system into our heating and cooling system to kill the virus.
7) We will be using N95 masks or a combination of Level 2 masks with face shields in addition to all the appropriate PPE.
8) We will now be using special devices to minimize aerosol spray contamination while using our handpieces and ultrasonic machines.
I hope that this letter has provided some clarity and a little peace of mind for you on what we are committing to, implementing, and executing to ensure the goal of your utmost safety.
On behalf of the Gendler Dental Center family I want to tell all of you that we love you, we miss you, and are truly humbled that you entrust us with your dental health. I wish you the best of health and prosperity and I truly look forward to seeing you all soon.
Joseph Gendler and team of Gendler Dental Center