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Interim Dental Infection Prevention and Control Guidance for the COVID‑19 Response – A New Paradigm

Course Number: 647

Facility Considerations

Strengthen hand hygiene, respiratory, and cough etiquette protocols for patients and office staff to reduce potential exposure to SARS‑CoV‑2.2

  • Post visual alert icons (e.g., signs, posters) at the entrance and other conspicuous areas (e.g., waiting areas, elevators, break rooms) to provide instructions (in appropriate languages) about when and how to perform hand hygiene and how to practice proper respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette. Facilities should require the wearing of a cloth face covering or facemask for source control.

  • Provide supplies for hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette at office entrances, waiting rooms, and patient check-in areas to include alcohol-based hand rub (ABHR) with 60 – 95% alcohol, tissues, and no-touch trash receptacles for disposal.

  • Install physical barriers (e.g., glass or plastic windows) at reception areas to limit close contact between office personnel and potentially infectious patients.

  • Ensure office waiting room / reception area allows for appropriate social distancing.

    • Chairs placed at least six feet apart.

    • Remove high touch items such as toys and magazines that cannot be regularly and/or effectively cleaned or disinfected from waiting areas.

    • Regularly disinfect high touch items that patients may contact (e.g., doorknobs, light switches, chair arm, tables, hangers.3

  • Minimize the number of persons waiting in the waiting room.

    • If necessary, patients may be directed to wait in a personal vehicle or outside the dental office to be contacted by mobile phone when it is their turn for dental care.

  • Minimize overlapping dental appointments.