Brink & White

 Safety First, Safety Always

 Protocol

 

In an effort to implement a “Safety First, Safety Always” environment and adapt current best practice guidelines, our offices and staff have implemented the following procedures to keep you and your family safe during your appointments.

 

  • ​All of our office locations were cleaned and sanitized with a hospital grade disinfectant prior to opening.
  • Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing.
  • We will require all age-appropriate family members, remaining in the office while the patient is being seen, arrive with a face mask and follow the recommended social distancing guidelines.
  • We will continue to follow our standard protocol for sterilization and testing of all our instruments, equipment, and water supply.
  • ​You will be asked to wash your hands and/or use hand sanitizer upon entering our offices.
  • We are conducting daily screening of all of our employees and doctors for increased temperatures and COVID-19 signs/risk factors.

 

A Letter to Our Patient Families

 

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our new normal habits and routines. While many things will be changing, one thing has remained a constant. The health and safety of our patients, their families, and our team is our number one priority.

 

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and staff safe.

 

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

 

COVID-19 has had many effects worldwide and dentistry is truly included. You will see a lot of

changes in the way we perform dentistry as well as changes in your future appointments. We want to assure you that this new normal will keep you, your child, our staff, and our doctors safe. These changes include:

  • All of our locations have been fogged with a hospital grade disinfectant and all surfaces have been cleaned and sanitized.
  • Toys, magazines, crayons and other items have been removed from our waiting room as these items are harder to completely disinfect.
  • Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing. This might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.
  • Health screenings for all of our employees will be conducted and recorded each day.
  • Patients will also go through a general health screening prior to their appointment
  • Our doctors and staff will be wearing enhanced personal protection equipment (PPE).
  • You and your child will be asked to wash your hands upon entering the building and anytime we observe a need for them to be washed again.

 

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we are taking to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to seeing your smile shine.

 

Sincerely,

 

The Brink & White Team

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

How has your office made preparations to re-open?

We have constantly been monitoring the local, state, and national news.  This included monitoring the guidance given by the dental organizations at each of those levels.  We also have been monitoring the guidelines and guidance given by the organization that oversees our specialty of pediatric dentistry.  The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry has provided guidance and instruction on what it means to operate in this new environment.  We have been in constant conversation with other dental practices with which we have a close relationship.  This group-think mentality has allowed us to utilize additional great ideas that other practices have developed.  That in turn allows us to take care of your family in the best way possible.  These ideas include (but are not limited to):

  • Each office was cleaned and sanitized with a hospital grade disinfectant prior to opening.
  • We have modified our appointment scheduling to allow for space intervals between patients.
  • We are having families wait in their car (when needed) after checking in for their appointment until we are ready to seat the patient.
  • If possible, we are having family members of patients remain in the car during the appointment
  • We are asking that all parents/guardians and older siblings of patients to wear a mask when in our offices
  • All patients will be asked to wash their hands (or utilize hand sanitizer) prior to the start of their appointment
  • We have changed the “traffic pattern” patients follow in the office to allow for social distancing

 

What types of appointments are you scheduling currently?

We have been following the directives at the state level regarding what was allowed within the practice of dentistry.  This includes any executive orders issued by the Governor of Tennessee.  His order allowed for the resumption of “elective” dental procedures beginning May 6th, 2020.  We are therefore scheduling both cleaning visits, exams, and treatment to be done.  However, appointments are limited to allow us to remain in compliance with all other standards that have been put in place with regards to sterilization and social distancing.  This approach allows us to maximize the safety to both staff and patients.

 

Why was my child’s appointment canceled if you are open?

Please understand that we are doing all we can to see our patients.  There have been constraints and limitations placed on the practice of dentistry to help keep dental staff and the public at large safe and minimize the risk of COVID-19 virus transmission.  This means that we must continue to triage, or prioritize, those patients most at risk for pain and infection.  At the same time we are working to see our healthy patients for their needed recall exams and cleaning appointments.  These types of appointments are also limited due to social distancing guidelines.  This means it will take some time to get all of our patients seen.  Again, please know that we want to see your kids as badly as you want them to be seen!

 

When will all of these changes go back to normal?

The honest answer to that question is that we do not know.  Thing may never change back completely to how they were before the COVID-19 outbreak.  Some of the changes we have implemented in our practice could very well become permanent.  We will stay up to date on the latest guidelines and requirements to implement whatever changes needs to be adopted.

 

Is it safe for my child to come in for their dental visit?

We as a practice are following a “Safety First, Safety Always” approach to each day.  This includes following guidelines for public safety utilizing appropriate sterilization and protective equipment to help keep your family and our staff safe and a healthy.  We strive for our offices to be cleaner than any other public space you will visit!

 

What about all the things I’ve read about “aerosol” procedures?

There is an increased risk of virus transmission when a procedure causes and aerosol, or damp air, to be generated.  This is suspected to allow the virus to travel and remain suspended in the air for a greater period of time.  Because of this increased risk, procedures that fall in this category will be handled differently by our office.  Additional precautions will be taken, additional protective gear will be worn, and these procedures will be completed only in certain areas of the office.

 

Why are you cleaning teeth with just a toothbrush?  Is that even effective?

The ADA code defines a dental cleaning, or prophylaxis, as removal of soft plaque, calculus (hardened plaque) and stains from the teeth.  Its purpose is to control local irritational factors.  A toothbrush has traditionally been used when needed for plaque removal and has been specifically recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry during this time to help limit aerosol production.  Scaling to remove the calculus can and will still be done utilizing hand instruments when needed.

901.382.0280

Bartlett  •  Lakeland  •  Munford

dr. joshua a. brink

dr. jason e. white

dr. emily m. sheppard

dr. mary austin smith

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