Valley Dental Group is continuing to require masks for vaccinated and unvaccinated patients and team members in our clinic. The CDC guidelines and the Minnesota Department of Health continue to require that even fully vaccinated people must still wear a mask in health care settings, this includes dental clinics.
COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs
- Are your providers vaccinated?
As Health Care workers, our providers were one of the first groups to be offered the vaccine. Some of our teams chose to receive the vaccine, while others did not. The choice is up to the providers to decide if they would like to receive the vaccine.
- Is the provider that I am seeing vaccinated?
I don’t know. Often, our team members are also our patients. We protect their health information just like we protect your health information.
- Why can’t Valley Dental Group require your teams to be vaccinated?
The vaccines that are currently being used have Emergency Use Authorizations. It is unclear if employers can require employees to be vaccinated or not. Typically, there must be a regulatory mandate or legislative action that would allow us to require our team members to be vaccinated. If the status of the vaccine changes, Valley Dental Group will respond appropriately.
- How are you keeping me safe?
Keep in mind, dental practices in Minnesota were able to reopen before there was a vaccine. Valley Dental Group continued to operate and do emergency dental care throughout the pandemic. Dentistry has been practicing with universal precautions since the mid 1980’s. It has been proven that transmission rates within a dental practice are very low due to this. The PPE that we wear during procedures has not changed with the arrival of a vaccine and the opportunity for our providers to be vaccinated. We continue to wear a mask during our entire workday, except when we are eating. We wear a level 3 mask, safety glasses, scrubs, and gloves during non-aerosol (without combined air/water spray) procedures. If we are doing aerosols (with combined air/water spray), we have N95 masks and face shields available, safety glasses, scrubs, disposable or laundered gown and gloves.
- I am really scared; I don’t want to get COVID-19.
We understand. This virus is unpredictable and that makes it scary. We are here to care for your oral health and have taken steps to do that as safely as possible.
- Why do I still have to wear a mask at your office?
Valley Dental Group will continue to require masks for vaccinated and unvaccinated patients and team members in our clinic. The CDC guidelines continue to say that even fully vaccinated people must still wear a mask in health care settings (this includes dental clinics). It also applies to other areas such as transportation hubs, airports and stations, and public transportation. This includes planes, buses and trains traveling into, within or outside of the U.S. as part of a federal mask mandate.
COVID-19 PATIENT PROTOCOL
Valley Dental Group is committed to providing the safest environment for our patients and our staff. Based on the current recommendations from the CDC and Minnesota Board of Dentistry, we need to ask you a series of questions before any patient treatment can occur.
- Have you exhibited any signs of illness such as fever or respiratory symptoms?
- Have you had a fever greater than 100.0?
- Have you had any loss of taste or smell?
- Have you had close contact with any individual diagnosed with or suspected to have COVID-19?
We request that if you are over 18, and do not require assistance, that you refrain from bringing a companion with you to your appointment.
We will ask you to wear a mask while in our office and will have some available for you if needed.
Our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children’s toys and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.
We have installed an air filtration unit with HEPA filters in every operatory room.
Our team members fill out a health questionnaire every morning to ensure your safety.