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​​​Guidance for patients: visiting a dental office during the COVID-19 pandemic

While there is no evidence of increased risk of COVID-19 infection when being seen for dental treatment, interim guidance for reduction of any potential risk have been recommended for all oral health professionals. As a result, your dental experience will likely be different from what it was before the pandemic.

CDSBC's expectations for registrants during the pandemic are aligned with the guidance and requirements provided by the BC Centre for Disease Control, the Office of the Provincial Health Officer, the Provincial Infection Control Network and WorkSafeBC.

What to expect when visiting a dental office

A public-friendly version of the interim guidance document for oral health care providers has been created to help patients understand what to expect when seeking dental care.

Guidance for Patients: What to expect when visiting a dental office during Phase 2 and 3 of BC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic ​>>

Key points

Office protocols are developed based on the best available evidence.

  • ​This document outlines what to expect before, during and after your appointment with respect to the questions you will be asked, changes to how the dental office functions, and other changes related to COVID-19 in the following areas:
    • Pre-screening before scheduling an appointment​
    • On arrival
    • During your appointment​
    • After your appointment (payment and exit from the office)

  • Because of the continuing low levels of COVID-19 in B.C. there are additional precautions in place. ​

  • ​Dental offices will continue with standard infection prevention and control practices, but will make physical adaptations within the dental office, and have enhanced hand hygiene and office cleaning, while assessing droplets and spatter that occur during specific dental procedures.

  • ​​​If you have questions or concerns about changes to your dental office you are encouraged to ask your dentist.​

Patient Safety

Standards and guidance have always been in place to make dental care safe.

In phases 2 and 3 of the B.C. government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, our registrants (certified dental assistants, dental therapists and dentists) have the same obligation as always: to maintain the standards of practice of the profession. They must:

  • Maintain infection and prevention and control (IPAC) procedures in their offices. The routine precautions outlined in CDSBC's IPAC Guidelines (PDF) were designed to prevent the transmission of potential pathogens, and have been shown to be effective over several decades.

  • Follow the interim guidance provided to B.C.'s regulated oral health professionals during phase 2 of the COVID-19 pandemic. This guidance is being updated as the situation evolves.