Important Message for our Dental Patients
July 15, 2020
Hi, everyone, I hope you are all well, and getting used to the “new normal” in Toronto. Certainly, wearing non-medical masks every day has become a habit (I think I can wear a Spiderman outfit now), and using hand sanitizer has become an obsession. I love the smell of 70% isopropyl alcohol (no Channel No. 5 for me). And although there has been an unfortunate worldwide shortage of surgical masks and N95 respirators, I’m just glad that it wasn’t toilet paper!
Seriously, I’m so happy to have finally re-opened my dental office on June 10th, and was able to reconnect with many of my patients and orthodontic kids after a closure of nearly 3 months. If nothing else, the Covid19 pandemic has taught me that health care and good friends should not be taken for granted. It is in these difficult times that we should count our blessings that we live in Canada, where the government does provide for us, mandating the lockdown period when it was needed, providing financial benefits, and slowly opening up our services and economy, cautiously. Also, we can rely on our health care system to support us, thanks to our brave front-line health care workers (my brother being one of them working at TGH ICU with Covid19 patients). I am so touched by the calls from my friends and from some of you, leaving messages on my voicemail during the mandatory closure, expressing your good wishes for health, and a speedy re-opening, and missing our service and staff. It has been a very scary and tough time for all of us, but we are now up and running and looking forward to your next dental visit.
As an update, in compliance with the Covid19 safety recommendations by the Chief Medical Officer of Health of Ontario, the RCDSO, and the Ontario Hygiene College, my office has invested thousands of dollars in upgrades to our clinic to incorporate the highest standard of infection control, obtaining enhanced PPE, and revising our protocols to observe social distancing whenever possible. Other than the usual stringent sterilization procedures used on our instruments and equipment which was in place before the pandemic, the new enhanced infection control measures for your protection include the following:
- Plexiglass barriers at our front desk and in the operatory open ceiling areas
- Hand sanitizers available in every room
- Disinfectant wipes in every room and used in cleaning protocols 3 times a day
- Enhanced PPE – N95 respirators, Face shields, disposable surgical gowns, surgical masks, hair nets.
- Hi-efficiency HEPA air purifier units in every operatory and reception room (not required by guidelines)
- Hypochlorous acid fogger unit to completely sanitize all the operatories at the end of day, and whenever needed (not required by guidelines)
- Hiring extra office cleaning staff to wash floors every night and deep clean the entire office every week
- Upgrading the computer software to handle the new Covid19 screening process, appointment scheduling, promoting contactless, paperless management of patient records, billings and insurance submissions online.
As you can deduce, our office overhead and expenses have increased immensely since the pandemic, and as a result, our determination to give you the highest level of protection and dental care will be reflected in a slight increase in our fees. By that, I mean, there will no longer be any discounts for patients without insurance coverage (including seniors), and all patients will be required to pay their co-payment for amounts not covered by insurance. Also, patients who do not show up for their confirmed appointments will be charged $100.
My associates and I hope to continue to provide you and your family with excellent dental services for many more years to come, so I respectfully ask for your understanding and cooperation in our new policy, going forward.
Please be safe, have hope, and show kindness and love during these difficult times.
If you have not yet booked your next recall appointment, or unsure if it was scheduled previously, please call us as our computer software has changed. We hope to see you real soon!
Dr. Lily Lo and Associates at Lawrence Avenue Dental.