Our dental community is currently faced with a challenging situation as the COVID-19 virus expands rapidly impacting the operation of practices. Overwhelmed by information on coronavirus? You need the most reliable and up to date information to best protect your practice. As a response and to support the dental community, Prime Practice COVID-19 Portal is your go-to-place. Safeguarding your practice and the welfare of your staff and patients is our top priority. We are committed to keeping you informed and working through these difficult times together.

Let’s hear the latest update from our founder and dental management expert

Dr. Phillip Palmer


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Can we sterilise masks?

Masks are single use items and cannot be sterilised. They contain a polypropylene layer which provides the bacterial filtration. This does not withstand the sterilisation process so although the mask appears intact, it is rendered useless by the steam sterilisation process.

What if one of our team gets sick?

If one of your team members get sick, they should remain at home until they are well again. If a team member is confirmed as having COVID-19 then as close contacts, all members of the team must self-isolate for 14 days. Patients would need to be informed as casual contacts and also asked to self-isolate.

Can we refuse treatment if someone is sick?

While treating patients if they are ill is discouraged, if someone has a dental emergency or is experiencing dental pain, they should be seen. If the patient is a confirmed COVID-19 case, referral for treatment in a negative pressure room is preferable.

What do we do if we find out one of our patients has tested positive and they visited us?

Depending on the circumstances, this may require all members of the dental team to self-isolate. In the first instance, you must contact your local health department.

Should we be removing magazines and toys from our waiting area?

High touch, communal items such as magazines and toys in the waiting can pose a risk of contamination. It is highly recommended that all these items be removed from waiting areas now.

What about our bathrooms, should we let our patients use them?

Patients are going to want to use the bathroom and we should not be denying them that. Ensure you have schedules for frequent cleaning of all public areas in the practice. Hand Hygiene is critical so ensure that you are providing disposable paper towels for drying of hands and consider an ABHR outside the toilet for use after touching the door handle. Visual reminders of appropriate Hand Hygiene procedures can be placed by hand basins to improve compliance.

Do we need to do anything additional to what we do already?

As health care providers, dental practices should already have sound policies and procedures for infection control that meet the requirements of the applicable industry guidelines and standards. With the use of Standard Precautions, appropriate PPE, and risk management strategies, dental practices should already be well placed to prevent any spread of infectious disease.

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