June 18th 2020 – update from Aileen and Niall Sloan, Sloan Dental
We truly hope this letter finds you and your family in good health.
Thank you for all being patient and bearing with us during this incredibly challenging time in our profession. We are pleased to inform you that Sloan Dental will be re–opening on Monday June 22nd as per Scottish Government advice. The work and energy that our team has put into making this happen has been amazing to see, and we would like to thank them for all their efforts.
The world and our community has been through a lot over the last few months and all of us are looking forward to resuming a more normal routine in a sensible manner. While many things have changed in our lives and workplaces, the core value of Sloan Dental has remained the same: to treat you and your family with the same care and skill as we would like to be treated.
Although the practice will be open from Monday, there are many changes to the way we will be working at first, and there will also be large restrictions placed upon us by the Scottish Government as to the amount and type of treatments we are allowed to perform. It is vital that we ensure this information is explained to you to ensure there is no confusion or disappointment:
- At first, we are only allowed to see Urgent (Emergency) Appointments, and we are not allowed to see any more than 10 patients per day. We have introduced a robust telephone triage system which will ensure that we allocate appointments to those who need them most. Upon phoning the practice, we will ask you a series of questions to determine the level of need – it may be that we allocate you an appointment; we may be able to offer you advice over the telephone; or we may take details and have one of our dentists call you back later to obtain more information.
- We have details of all those patients who have contacted us during our forced closure – we will get in touch with you but if your issue is not urgent please allow our team a little time to do this.
- The types of dental treatment that all practices in Scotland are allowed to perform in surgery during this Phase is extremely limited – we will be able to offer extractions, temporary re-cements and dressings and issuing of prescriptions; other types of treatments (those that generally involve dental drills) are not allowed to be performed in general practice – if such a procedure is deemed necessary we will arrange for a referral to a central hub and the procedure will be carried out there.
- We hope to be able to move to the next phase soon, at which we can offer treatments such as exams and routine care – but this is dependent on advice from the Scottish Government and is issued to all dentists at the same time. We will update this information to you as soon as we have it.
For the safety of our patients and our team we have had to make some changes to the patient journey. The aim of this is to maintain social distancing and reduce risk of transmission of the virus. Please work with us and our team as we implement this new way of working:
- When booking appointments we will be triaging all patients on the phone to confirm their personal details, medical history and medications – this is a screening process to assess the safety of treating you in practice and the urgency of your treatment needs.
- To improve efficiency and workflow we will be moving to a more digitised and paperless workflow with all medical history forms being filled out digitally by yourself at home prior to your visit.
- We will ask that patients arrive alone and on time for their appointment, but upon arrival please phone the practice to let us know – we will then call you back when we are ready to meet you at the front door (which will be locked).
- We have hand sanitiser that we will ask you to use when you enter the practice and we will ask you a few further medical questions. You will then be escorted by one of our team directly to the surgery.
- You will notice our waiting area and surgeries have been cleared of non-essential items to improve cleanliness during this time as well as a protective shield at reception.
- Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients and these will be staggered to minimise patients coming into contact with one another, and with longer gaps to allow for enhanced disinfection protocols.
- Any payment will be by contactless methods and any future appointments will be made in the surgery, saving you an extra trip to reception.
- Our bathroom will no longer be available to patients during their appointment.
We can’t wait to see you all again soon and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. Please email the practice general enquiries address at any time on firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of the team will get back to you.
As always we will keep you updated as we move through these Phases of re–opening – we will hope to have more information on the next phase in 2-3 weeks
See you all soon,