Can We Finally Visit the Dental Office After Covid-19 Vaccination?
With the issuance of Covid-19 vaccines in the United States, the country and world at large is getting into a critical phase of the pandemic. In this, we canhelp our communities evade the disease.
When the pandemic hit in early 2020 and shut down the country, many dentistry practices were closed. They were only allowed to open with urgent issues. Shortly after, there wasa strong emphasis on how to prevent and control the disease.
The social distancing rule and the wearing of face masks sure prevented the prevalence of the virus. It was now easier to contain the disease while getting your needed healthcare. However, many could still not get to their preferred oral health professionals as many practices were closed.
Several months ago, many dental offices adapted to providing competent preventative care. The result is a remarkable reduction in the covid-19 cases among dental hygienists.
Dentists have risento the challenge. This is the move to administer immunizations to millions of Americans as quickly as possible. This makes a dentist a crucial part in the prevention of the virus spread.
State Issued Guidelines
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), dentists, dental teams, and dental students will be among the first lots to get the Covid-19 vaccine. The CDC issues this recommendation on Dec 28. The general public gladly received it. Dentistry is a crucial part of health formany Americans. Denying them that poses like a second mini-pandemic.
CDC states that early access to vaccines will ensure health safety to this essential workforce that serves almost 21 million Americans. It not only protects them but their families, friends, communities, and the general public.
The strategy is to start with healthcare personnel and the residents in long-term facilities to quickly curb the infections. This recommendation has received critics that it might exclude local health care providers from getting the vaccine, but that’s not the case.
To clear the air, the CDC advisory committee issued a definition on healthcare personnel. They are defined as any paid or unpaid person serving in the healthcare setting, with direct or indirect exposure to many patients or infectious equipment.
It only aims at getting to the more prominent groups first. Eventually, every healthcare staff will have received the vaccine.
Why Healthcare Staff First?
First, we can all agree that health care staff are at extremely high risks of getting into contact with infected patients. It’s because most people rush to a healthcare facility when they experience the slightest symptom.
Once the healthcare staff is vaccinated, they can spread the vaccination to many people. Dental professionals are not left-back. They are ready to join other healthcare professionals in protecting the community. With proper training, storage aptitudes, and a resourceful bandwidth, they should administer the immunization to those most in need.
If you have for long not had a dental appointment at Ballard Dentistry, your time is nigh. There are already positive movements pressing for dentists to administer the vaccines during the pandemic. Better still, they are to be included in the first phase of vaccine recipients.
There was an approval change permitting Arkansas State oral health professionals to be among the first to offer Covid-19 vaccines in a recent listing. Massachusetts also lists dentists amongthe first to administer the vaccine.
In an explicit inclusion, the California Department of Public Health allows dental teams to be among the first to administer Covid-19 immunizations. The future looks bright.
What Should Dentists Do?
Here is how dentists play a vital role
The virus is imminently spreading. ACIP, therefore, guides the distribution ofvaccinesmost comprehensively and equitably possible. It means that distributors like safety net providers need prioritizing. They can reach high target populations.
Dentists serve a wide variety of populations. More than 18 million people see a dentist yearly and do not visit any other medical professional.
There are about 30 million people served by the DentalQuest provider network singularly. Most of them are medical patients. This shows how many people can get the vaccines if dentists were in the forefront to administer the antibody immunization.
Additionally, community health centers with dental providers are strategically positioned as good access points for underserved populations.
There are also plans to recruit selectproviders who will aid in administering the vaccine. Many dental offices are also being staffed with equipment and storage facilities. The equipment is not only for the general public but for their occupational safety too.
The ACIP recommends that the professionals issuing vaccines be up to 6-feet from their patients. In general, the inclusion of dental professionals in the team for providing vaccines means the burden is reduced and there will be less close contact in other medical departments and facilities.