Dear Friends and Colleagues,
I hope this letter finds you and your families well. No doubt we have all had many challenges in the last several weeks, but here at Northern Star OMS, we are optimistic about getting back to work. As of May 11, Governor Walz has approved the return of elective surgery, however a thoughtful approach is necessary. As long as there is a concern about the surge of COVID-19, we are scheduling healthy patients in limited numbers and prioritizing the backlog of patients based on urgency.
During the emergency only mandate we began seeing patients for consultations via Telehealth using the HIPAA-compliant platform Doxy.me. It has really worked well and we will continue to see as many patients for consultations virtually as we can to minimize patient traffic in the office. This works well for third molar patients, emergency patients, some pathology and some implant patients. It has also worked very well for post-operative check ups following third molar procedures, usually conducted one week following surgery. We will be requesting referral and radiographs the same as we have in the past for these patients. In most situations, if imaging is not available, the Telehealth consult can still be performed.
For live patients undergoing surgery, all of our surgery rooms have always been closed door. We are minimizing the production of droplet spray as best we can and leaving ample time between patients for room cleaning. As reliable data becomes available we will implement additional best practices for infection control related to the spread of the novel corona virus. Our highest priorities are the safety of your patients, safety of our staff and safety of our community.
Sending best wishes for your continued good health, and a smooth re-entry in getting back to work.
Julie A. Chavez DDS