Covid-19 Reopening Letter to Patients

May 3, 2020

Dear Small, Martin and Piers Orthodontics family,

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community and practice have been through many changes over the last few months. We last saw patients for regularly-scheduled appointments on March 17, and since then we’ve been fortunate to be able to connect with many of you through virtual appointments to move your treatment forward. Our staff has been amazing during this time. They have worked diligently calling and rescheduling appointments, directing patients in the use of SmileSnap virtual appointments, bringing patients in for emergency in-office visits and answering all of your questions. We deeply appreciate how flexible and understanding everyone has been during this time. Now it is time to resume the practice of Orthodontics.

Thanks to new guidance from the state dental board, we are finalizing plans to reopen our offices this week. More details will be forthcoming, but in the meantime, we want to share the following procedures that will be used to add another level of protection for all of our patients and staff:

  1. Your appointment reminder will include your appointment check-in procedure.
  2. Appointment check-in will be performed from your car, our parking lot lobby.
  3. You will then receive a text when we are ready for you to enter the office.
  4. We are asking all patients and guardians/parents to wear masks while inside the office. (Unfortunately, we will not be able to provide masks for everyone.)
  5. To limit the number in the office, we ask that only the patient (or the patient and 1 parent/guardian in the case of a child) attend the appointment.
  6. You will be asked to use a hand sanitizer immediately upon entering the office.
  7. You or your parent/guardian will be asked to complete a Screening Form.
  8. All patients and any parents/guardians will have their temperature taken using a no-touch thermometer.
  9. All staff will be wearing masks at all times and have their temperatures recorded upon entry.
  10. Online or phone payments will be encouraged to limit touch interaction.
  11. Scheduling the next appointment will be done via phone.

While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety. As you know, infection control has always been a priority in our practice. We follow infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We monitor 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. Also, we are fortunate that our treatment areas/chairs are greater than 6 feet apart and that we have private rooms for aerosol-generating procedures.

In order to allow for proper social distancing, we will be reducing the number of patients we treat in our office at one time. We are currently rebuilding our schedule to allow for this, and our doctors plan to work more days per week in order to provide more opportunities for patients to be treated. We appreciate your understanding as we work to see our entire patient family as quickly and as safely as possible.

Since the beginning of our office closure, we have been tracking each patient’s treatment progress, and when we reopen, we will be prioritizing those who are most overdue for treatment, those who need broken appliances repaired, and those whose appointments to have braces removed were delayed. Our team will be working hard in the coming weeks to reschedule all of these appointments. There will be no need to call our office to reschedule—we will contact you. If you experience a new breakage or emergency and are in discomfort, however, please reach out—we are here, as always, to help.

We are so excited to see you again! Please call us if you have questions about your safety or our new procedures for patient care. Thank you for being patient during our “stay at home” time. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to seeing you and your family.

Sincerely,

Small, Martin and Piers Orthodontics