Masks are still required in the dental office.
Get resources to help your office communicate mask requirements.
California issued an order requiring approximately 2.5 million of the state’s health care workers to get the COVID-19 booster to be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus. The state order does not include dental offices, but Santa Clara County and San Francisco have since issued booster orders for dental personnel.
CDA Practice Support has developed the California State Reopening Guide for Dental Practices to help dentists and dental teams understand their responsibilities to maintain a safe environment and communicate with patients about continued COVID-19 safety precautions in the dental office.
Update: The Cal/OSHA Standards Board voted to withdraw the revisions to its COVID-19 prevention emergency temporary standards that the board approved June 3 and sent to the OAL for review. The board met again June 17 and approved new changes to the standards that took effect the same day after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order.
Some dentists are unclear about whether to maintain face covering and social distancing requirements in the dental office following the CDC's updated mask guidance for fully vaccinated people. Cal/OSHA has not yet updated its COVID-19 prevention guidance for dental offices. Protocols for masks and social distancing are still required.
Some dental professionals are facing a new set of challenges from wearing additional personal protective equipment as they adapt to providing care in the COVID-19 era. Here are some of the most common conditions to be aware of and tips to help alleviate the discomfort.
Residents of nine counties in California are now under orders to shelter-in-place for three weeks to help curb the spread of the new coronavirus. The orders took effect the morning of March 17 in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties, which currently have the largest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state.
A new safety sharps product, the Verena Solutions SimpleCAP, is available to dentists and can be purchased from most major suppliers. Dental practices are required by the Cal/OSHA bloodborne pathogens regulation to regularly evaluate the appropriateness of using safety sharps with the goal of reducing needlesticks and other “sharps” injuries that can cause exposure to bloodborne pathogens.
Dentists have an ethical and legal obligation to do no harm and to protect the health of their patients. But what happens when their patients put others at risk? Such is the dilemma faced by some practice owners who have called The Dentists Insurance Company’s Risk Management Advice Line with questions regarding their obligation to treat unvaccinated patients. At the core of this dilemma is the return of a disease previously believed to have been eliminated: measles.
A new law to ensure proper irrigation and disinfection of exposed pulpal tissue went into effect Jan. 1 of this year. As explained in a December 2018 Update article, the law states that water and other methods used for irrigation when performing procedures on exposed dental pulp must be “sterile or contain recognized disinfecting or antibacterial properties.”