Dr. Lucy Mutara is the founding CEO and principal dentist at Astradental Services limited. Here, Dr. Lucy answers a variety of questions about when, what, and how she has implemented changes in Astradental Services to ensure the health and safety of the team and patients. Perhaps you can benefit from her advice in this time of uncertainty.
First off, have you resumed normal business hours in your dental practice?
We resumed our office hours as of June 2nd, 2020 with our entire clinical staff while the support staff work from home. Prior to that we were only seeing emergency patients in our mobile clinics.
What was the first step you took to ready your practice so you and your team could resume practicing dentistry?
We initially closed the main clinic to study the Covid-19 situation in the country. This helped us prepare the Clinic and update its infection control protocols.
We opened our Mobile clinics to handle emergency patients who we could not turn away.
Is there a protocol you followed when reopening your practice?
Yes. We have followed the recommended guidelines for dental practices from the Ministry of Health in Kenya.
What are the things you consider absolutely essential to change or upgrade in your practice to make it safe?
Pre-screening of both clients and staff and do symptoms checking when we are at the office.
- Strict schedule with patient-distancing appointments
- Checking of Symptoms upon arrival, Fever and cough.
- Eliminating all appointments when patients are sick or symptomatic
- Online communication including online triage
These are new processes we have in place for a standard patient visit that are different pre-COVID- 19
What have you done to make your dental team comfortable with the level of workplace safety in your practice?
Use of proper PPE, including face shield.
We removed extra items off counters.
Removed toys from the children play area
We placed antiseptic soap dispensers throughout the office.
We ordered new touchless thermometers.
Our support staff working from home.
Having meetings on Microsoft team.
We also provide training for our clinical staff on Covid 19 protocols.
All these measures have also given our patients feel more confident and safer to visit us.
Have you had to raise your fees to cover increased safety measures performed in your office?
No, we have not raised our fees.
Our Mission as Astradental is “Providing Excellent dental care at an affordable price”
What lessons have we learned from Covid 19 and any Advice you would like to share?
To put ourselves out there for our patients and staff members, we are making use of our Mobile dental clinics. We will be able to take house calls for patients who are not able to come to the clinic. Provide dental care at their doorsteps.
These are Challenging and uncertain times, but we feel confident that as Astradental community we will get through this together.