image man and child smiling at each other

COVID-19 Precautions Protocol

March 16, 2021

The health, safety, and well-being of our team, patients and the wider community is our top priority, and we are committed to doing all we can to limit the spread of COVID-19 within the community.

Restricted Attendance

If you have;

  • been in contact with a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case in the past 14 days
  • travelled interstate to known hotspots in the past 14 days, or been in close contact with someone who has done so
  • felt unwell, including but not limited to symptoms of COVID-19 such as fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath

Then your dental appointment at Melton Dental Group must be scheduled for 14 days after your return from travel or last contact with an at-risk person, or when your symptoms have resolved and you are no longer considered a risk.

Reception Area

Melton Dental Group has taken a no compromise approach to our additional protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

We request that patients:

  • use alcohol-based hand sanitiser to disinfect your hands upon arrival as well as on departure from the practice
  • do not touch your eyes, nose, mouth or face
  • do not shake hands
  • attend appointments alone if possible, although we are mindful of consent requirements and family commitments.

We have:

  • removed the reception area magazines so please bring a book or your mobile device
  • adjusted seating in reception area to facilitate social distancing

Our reception staff are regularly disinfecting:

  • surfaces and chairs in the reception area
  • telephones, the EFTPOS machine and pens at the reception desk
  • all door handles

Patients may remain in their car rather than wait in our reception area, however we ask that you call us to let us know that you have parked and are waiting in your car. We will call you when the surgery is disinfected and prepared for you. Upon arrival at the practice you will be asked to use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser then be escorted directly into the surgery.

Surgery Procedures

As dental professionals we and our clinical team are ourselves at the highest risk of exposure, however our protocol ensures protection of both our patients and our team.

Our strict infection control measures target the three routes of potential spread in the dental setting: aerosol, contact and contaminated surfaces.

We have always implemented strict infection control measures including:

  • sterilising instruments for each and every patient
  • using disposable suction tips and instrument covers
  • disinfecting the dental chair, suction cords, instrument control panels, dental light unit and benchtops between every appointment
  • placing protective barriers over surfaces such as headrest, instrument control panels and x-ray units which are changed between every appointment
  • using transfer tweezers to take materials out of drawers during an appointment (to avoid contaminating the contents of the drawers)
  • our clinical team wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): gloves, mask and protective eyewear

In addition to these measures we are now

  • requesting patients to undertake a 30-second preoperational antimicrobial mouth rinse with a 0.1% hydrogen peroxide solution prior to commencing treatment
  • using high speed suction whenever possible (reduces aerosol by 95%)
  • using rubber dam whenever possible (reduces aerosol by 70%)

Additional time has been added to the schedule to facilitate these measures.

With the COVID-19 Precautions Protocol we are implementing in addition to our routine strict infection control protocol, you can rest assured of a safe clean environment every time you visit us.

Please note that we will not be passing on any of the expenses associated with additional staff, additional cleaning times, or masks to you.

Regarding the Treatment of Patients Who Are at Risk of COVID-19

Having taken into consideration the safety of the team and other patients, Melton Dental Group will not treat patients who are at moderate to high risk of COVID-19 infection. There will be very few situations where a patient has a significant dental emergency such that the use of analgesics will not allow a delay until the patient has reached the end of any mandatory quarantine period, or is no longer at risk of being infectious.

Melton Dental Group apologises most sincerely to any patient this may affect, however we will do all that we can without physical presence in the surgery. A dentist will conduct a telephone consultation and take measures that may assist with management including prescription of antibiotics or analgesics or referral to a hospital dental clinic providing all relevant information to facilitate treatment there.