Dentistry as a profession will be viewed differently once clinicians can re-open their doors post COVID-19. North Carolina has seen an 81% decline in productivity as a result of societies across the nation recommending dental practices cancel all elective care as of March 16, 2020. While this swift decline in production caused by the health crisis is new(er), the situation is not new. Healthcare professionals have been faced with numerous health emergencies that have called for new measures to be incorporated to continue serving their patients.
Risk management experts agree we must identify specific indicators to determine when the likelihood of returning to a state of normalcy will be. Factors such as:
- Seeing a steady decline in new cases of COVID-19 for a minimum of 14 days.
- Having the resources to adequately test, treat, and track cases at the state level.
- Manufacture therapeutics to contain another potential outbreak.
Though many dentists are patiently waiting to see when they can resume elective care, now is the time to begin strategizing what care will look like within the practice when they can reopen. You can accurately plan your practice’s timeframe to reopen by staying updated through official means of information from the ADA, CDC, or WHO. As you continue observations, the reopening process should be viewed in stages, as opposed to opening doors again and continuing where you may have left off.