Three key focuses of my blog are Current Events, Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Much of the healthcare sector has stayed open during the Coronavirus/COVID-19 Crisis/Pandemic. Dental practices in most instances closed down unless absolutely necessary. As the lockdown eases, dental practices will look to re-open and if you’re an owner of one, there are some aspects you want to consider. The following contributed post is entitled, Re-Opening Your Dental Practice After COVID-19.
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As the coronavirus lockdown rules start to relax even further it opens up opportunities for businesses and services to start back up. One of the first things that will open up is the healthcare system. Obviously, doctors surgeries, hospitals, and pharmacies have remained open through the pandemic. However, the wider healthcare world had to shut down – including dental practices in some areas. If you’re a dentist that’s struggled for business over the last few months, you’re probably eager to get started once more. So, here are some tips to open your dental practice when COVID-19 restrictions are lifted:
Stock up on PPE
First and foremost, be sure you have a good supply of PPE. This includes both masks and gloves, seeing as all of your work involves playing around with people’s mouths. Masks are absolutely vital, but gloves are just as important when you consider what you’ll be touching. A dental supply store will stock everything you need, so don’t hesitate to buy as much as possible. As of right now, PPE supplies are a lot better than they were when the virus initially broke out. But, who knows how long that will last? It’s better to stock up now so you can keep providing treatment for as long as possible.
Enforce new appointment rules
It’s so tempting to jump right back into the swing of things when you open your doors after lockdown. However, you have to take things slow. Don’t open your practice up for a full day of appointments, restrict how many people you see each day. Yes, this means you miss out on lots of money, but safety must come first. You need to plan it so there’s a small number of people in the waiting room at all times. This will probably mean you have to extend the time between appointments to avoid lots of people coming in at the same time. Instead of having 10 minutes between appointments, extend it to 20 or 30. As time goes on you can gradually move things back to normal as per the government guidelines.
Reduce your staff
A lot of businesses are doing this as it reduces the number of people all within one area. Obviously, a dental practice can be pretty small, so you can’t afford to have lots of dentists, nurses, and admin staff all running around. Furthermore, it would be pretty pointless if you’re operating on a reduced schedule. Instead, reduce your staff and come in with a smaller crew. Again, this limits the risk of infections and keeps things safe for everyone. You may only need yourself and a secretary for the time being. Once more, you can increase your staff as the appointments get back to normal.
It has been an incredibly difficult time for all dentists during coronavirus. If you’ve not been allowed to work throughout this period, then you probably can’t wait to get started again. Keep an eye out for any news in your country that lets you get back to work. Then, follow these three tips when you re-open.