While doing some admin this week I came across our Staff Holiday sheet for 2020. These are completed at the beginning of the year and days are selected for different events and holidays for the incoming year. How confident we were with all our big plans for the year ahead! Little did we know that Coronavirus had other ideas. It has literally stopped the world in its tracks. Planes have been grounded, weddings have been postponed and holidays are now being advertised for 2021 before Summer 2020 has even officially begun. ‘Furlough’ ‘Zoom’ and ‘PPE’ are now buzz words for this time and will forever be associated with this period of transition from the world as we knew it to what it is now.
The changes for lots of sectors, including dentistry has been significant. Restrictions have been put in place and may remain that way for some time. Our dentists are only able to see people face to face who have a genuine dental emergency and we are unable to provide emergency treatment that generates aerosols such as drilling or scaling. Treatments are limited to providing prescriptions, giving advice or extracting teeth. The most recent public announcement concerning dentistry here was that from of the 8th May dentists can see patients face-to-face who have a dental emergency. This change is for dental practices who had not been seeing dental emergencies in their practice, which we have been doing. Unfortunately, it is not a return to normal dentistry and we continue to await further guidance on what treatment we can and can’t provide.
The introduction of the Urgent Care Centres at the start of lockdown has enabled patients with severe dental pain to be treated. In order for patients to access this they need to be referred by their own dentist. For us to provide such referrals if needed and to provide advice and prescriptions remotely and face-to-face when required we have been open for phone calls 7 days a week. 9am-12pm 2pm-5pm. This arrangement will continue until further guidance is issued. We know this is frustrating for our patients, especially those who were in the middle of treatment or who had appointments made for treatment to begin. It is particularly inconvenient for patients who do not have a dental pain emergency but have had dental issues such as teeth breaking or crowns coming loose. We only wish we could assist you more but unfortunately, we can’t until restrictions are lifted.
We thank you for your patience and understanding throughout these difficult times and we look forward to reuniting our lovely team and welcoming our wonderful patients back with open arms-obviously from a safe distance and with the appropriate PPE and strict hand sanitising procedures!
In the meantime, keep an eye on our Facebook page ‘Toome Dental & Facial Aesthetics’ for the most up to date information. If you do not have Facebook our Facebook feed is relayed on our website home page for you.
Stay safe and hang in there-better days are ahead.