Thank you for your patience during lockdown when we were forced to close our doors due to restrictions placed upon us by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the Chief Dental Officer (CDO) and the General Dental Council (GDC).
As you are probably aware these restrictions will be lifted from Monday 8th June 2020 however, I only found this out via BBC news instead of any of the previously mentioned bodies. As you can imagine this has placed us in a difficult situation as we were given no warning (other than these 8 days) that restrictions would be lifted so we were taken somewhat by surprise.
That said it is obviously fantastic news that we can get back to helping you with your dental care BUT I need to explain a few ‘housekeeping’ rules first.
I have over 100 people waiting on a triage list with either broken teeth or lost crowns or toothache that we have worked tirelessly to nurse through lockdown. These people need to be seen first and as a matter of urgency. Please understand that although your dental check-up is very important, we may have to rearrange it in order to help someone else who is in pain or desperate need. We have a strict protocol for who will be seen and in what order so please be kind to Chloe making your appointment, she is doing everything in her power to fit everyone in, but it will be a considerable juggling act.
This sadly leads onto a small niggle I have. I took all the phone calls to the practice over lockdown. I was amazed at how rude people felt they could be to who they thought was a ‘receptionist’. This behaviour is totally unacceptable. I would like to add it actually was very rarely one of our actual registered patients but on the whole people just ringing round, but still I was alarmed at how people could be so inconsiderate. Please don’t be rude to my staff as being rude to my staff is the same as being rude to me. We do our absolute upmost to try to help and accommodate but we can’t please everyone all of the time and that is going to be more so than ever over the next month.
So, what can you do to help us help you? Firstly, the most important point is:
- Please do not come into the practice if you suspect you have any symptoms of Covid-19 or may have been in contact with someone that has. I know we have heard this repeatedly over the past 10 weeks, but it is vitally important in order to contain the virus as much as possible.
- Please observe the 2m social distancing tape at reception, only coming forward to use the card machine.
- Please be aware we will no longer be accepting cash or cheques for the foreseeable future.
- Please use the alcohol hand gel found before the glass door and try to minimise hand contact once in the practice as much as possible.
- Please carry a hanker chief with you in-case you need to sneeze and sneeze into your hanker chief. If you need to dispose of any tissues, please only do so into an orange bin liner found around the practice.
- We are limiting people into the practice so you will probably find yourself in the waiting room on your own. Please do not think this means we are not busy, instead we are doing our best to keep you and ourselves as safe as possible over the coming weeks.
- In turn we ask that you please come to your appointment on your own. If you must come with a carer, please ensure they are also aware of our guidelines for social distancing and minimising personal contact.
- Sadly, due to the global PPE shortage our PPE costs have considerably escalated. 1 mask now costs the same as 50 before Covid. On booking an appointment we unfortunately will have to take a £10 PPE subsidy over the phone before we can book you in. Please understand as soon as PPE costs return to pre-Covid prices we can remove this charge.
- We will be contacting everyone that is either on the triage list or had an existing appointment which needs to be rebooked. Please do not continuedly ring for an update on your progress as this will just delay the whole system. I promise we will see you and as soon as possible.
I hope these guidelines will help you understand our restart plan which in turn I hope will help the whole process flow as best as possible. No doubt there will be some hiccups along the way and if you feel there is anything we could be doing better please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, on behalf of the whole team at Moreton Dental we are so looking forward to seeing everyone again and as always appreciate your dedicated loyalty as valued patients.