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News — Infection control

Handpieces Must be Sterilized Between Patients

The CDC has come out with guidance about handpieces and sterilization. I have always advocated sterilization of handpieces between patients and for good reason. Basically, the CDC recommends (which most if not all State Dental Boards interpret as law) that you should be heat sterilizing your handpieces and other intraoral instruments that can be removed from air and water lines between each patient use. (see the article below) If you have any questions about this or need help teaching proper sterilization techniques to your staff, please give us a call. 817-755-0035. The only shame is asking for help is in asking...

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No More State Board Rule for COVID-19 Precautions: Now What Do We Do?

No More State Board Rule for COVID-19 Precautions: Now What Do We Do?

 

On 06/18/2021 the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) met and agreed to allow the COVID-19 Rule (officially 22 TAC 108.7(16)) expire with no replacement and the suggestion that dentists in Texas look to the CDC for continued guidance. This rule required patient screening, twice daily employee screening, use of N95/KN95 (or substantial equivalent), and so on.

 

A couple of weeks prior, however, OSHA announced the Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) to address COVID-19 safety in healthcare settings. The ETS being a Standard has the effect of law and is enforceable as such. We will explore the CDC Guidelines in a moment, but first, let us discuss the ETS.

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Clinic Laundry - Are You Hanging by a Thread?

What do you do with your clinic laundry? What should you be doing? Read the following scenario while you think about it: It’s the end of a busy and productive day at the office. So busy that you’ve got to rush to pick up your child from daycare. The first thing your boy does is run straight to you embraces you in a giant hug. So sweet right? That depends. Did you take off your cloth lab jacket BEFORE you left the office? If not, then you’ve just exposed your child to patient “ick”. Gross! That’s not something you want...

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The Lowdown on Tuberculosis

TB is an airborne disease meaning it is spread from person-to-person by air. Dental Health Care Workers (DHCW) must be provided adequate PPE, which in this case requires the use of respirator masks for which DHCW must be fit tested annually by a qualified occupational health specialist.

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You Can't Handle the TRUTH... About N-95 vs. KN-95 Respirator Masks

I don’t understand why you keep telling us we have to implement an OSHA Respiratory Protection Program – we don’t use respirators.
  • The terminology around masks and respirators is the cause of a lot of confusion. You use N-95 masks, which you call “masks”. The N-95 mask is classified by OSHA as Face Filtering Respirators (FFR). As such, N-95 respirator masks are subject to the requirements OSHA’s Respiratory Protection standard (1910.134).

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