FGDP(UK) & CGDent publish COVID-19 guidance synopsis

The College and FGDP(UK) have published a synopsis of their guidance on the implications of COVID-19 for the safe management of general dental practice.

The new synopsis highlights key recommendations at each step of the patient journey, and is designed to be used in conjunction with the guidance, which supports dental professionals to take a risk-based approach to providing safe care, whatever the national COVID-19 threat level.

The guidance, originally published on 1 June, has also now been updated with some minor amendments. Among these, prophylactic polishing of teeth has been added to the risk stratification matrix, use of face coverings by all patients and carers in non-clinical areas is now recommended (in line with government advice on preventing transmission in enclosed public spaces), and the use of shoe and head coverings is only now advised when indicated by a risk assessment. There are also some clarifications, such as around selection of PPE based on a risk assessment, and on the mopping of floors between patients following treatment carrying a high risk of exposure to aerosol.

Both the synopsis and guidance are available at https://www.fgdp.org.uk/implications-covid-19-safe-management-general-dental-practice-practical-guide and /standards-guidance.

Production of the synopsis has been supported by Sensodyne.

COVID-19 guidance: FGDP(UK)-CGDent webinar on the safe management of general dental practice

Earlier this week, the Faculty of General Dental Practice (FGDP(UK)) and College of General Dentistry published Implications of COVID-19 for the safe management of general dental practice – a practical guide.

Join our webinar at 6pm TODAY Wednesday 3 June, when your questions about the guidance will be answered by members of the development group:

  • Dr Ian Mills FFGDP(UK), Dean, Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK)
  • Dr Mick Horton FFGDP(UK), Trustee, College of General Dentistry
  • Dr Onkar Dhanoya, Chair, Forward Planning Task Group
  • Dr Roshni Karia MJDF, Vice Dean, Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK)
  • Diane Rochford, DCP representive, British Association of Private Dentistry, and representing nine national DCP membership organisations (TBC)
  • Dr Chet Trivedy FDS RCS Eng, Consultant in Emergency Medicine

This event has finished. Details of a recorded version will be posted shortly.

Supported by Sensodyne

FGDP(UK) & CGDent launch UK guidelines for safe return to dental practice during COVID-19

The FGDP(UK) and newly formed College of General Dentistry have convened an expert task force to review the evidence base for dental practice during the COVID-19 outbreak and have today launched the official summary report of the guidelines ‘COVID-19: guidelines for safe care in general dental practice’.

The Guidance can be accessed here.

The UK wide task force panel includes 30 senior members of a number of organisations, including the British Dental Association, the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, the Association of Dental Groups, the Association of Dental Implantology and the newly-formed British Association of Private Dentistry and has received support and input from groups across the profession including the British Society of Dental Hygiene & Therapy and the British Association of Dental Nurses. It supports dental professionals to take a risk and evidence-based approach to providing care in the current circumstances and allows the flexibility of setting minimum requirements whatever the national COVID-19 threat level.

Ian Mills, Dean of FGDP(UK) comments “During the initial stages of the pandemic it was important that all but emergency dentistry procedures were paused. However, we are now at a point where the risk to the oral health of the population will be impacted unless practices are able to reopen, albeit with the correct protection for patients and the dental team. 

This guidance has been developed as a framework to enable the confident return to practice, now and also into the future as the situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve. It is the result of the collaborative effort of a team of dedicated individuals from across the profession who have spent the last few weeks committed to reviewing the evidence, assessing the risks and finding a way forward.”

In line with other FGDP(UK) Guidance and Standards publications, the guidance adopts the ABC (Aspirational, Basic, Conditional) approach to measures with ‘basic’ measures being a minimum standard.

The guidance is divided into five sections – four of which reflect the patient journey and the fifth concerns general management of the practice. These sections are assigned a risk status and ABC based risk mitigation measures to ensure safe practice and include:

  1. Pre-appointment – including the important role of digital communication to minimise contact time
  2. Patient attendance (pre-treatment) – including the communication of new infection control and prevention procedures to patients along with changes to waiting areas
  3. During treatment – including recommendations for approaches to aerosol generating exposures (AGEs) developed using a model based on risk continuum and recommendations for appropriate levels of PPE
  4. After treatment – including procedures to protect patients and staff and the use of an appropriate fallow period following high risk AGEs
  5. Management/governance tasks – including risk assessments for all staff members and awareness of the need to encourage staff to monitor and support if they feel unwell

Onkar Dhanoya, Chair of the Task Group, commented “These guidelines have been developed to address the specific needs of primary dental care. This includes the recognition that whilst safety of patients and team members is the priority, closure of practices is in itself harming patients, their oral health and psychological wellbeing. The use of the risk matrix tables within the guidance allows us to reflect the varied needs of practices and the fluid nature of the current situation.”

Roshni Karia, Junior Vice Dean, FGDP(UK) comments “The COVID-19 pandemic has brought uncertainty to a number of aspects of daily life. This guidance aims to help develop specific strategies for primary dental care with a realistic approach to what can be achieved in practice. It also provides guidance for supporting patients and staff who may be in greater risk categories. By working together as a team, we can all proceed with confidence and help to sustain trust in dentistry overall.”

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National dental organisations join forces to agree return-to-work guidance

National dental organisations have joined forces to agree guidance for UK general dental practices on returning to work as the coronavirus pandemic eases.

The COVID-19 Future Planning Task Group, convened by the Faculty of General Dental Practice UK and College of General Dentistry, brings together senior members of a number of organisations, including the British Dental Association, the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, the Association of Dental Implantology and the newly-formed British Association of Private Dentistry.

Dental care professionals are represented to ensure all members of the dental team are able to contribute to this vital piece of work, and the Task Group includes patient representation as well as significant professional experience and expertise in a range of areas. These include infection prevention and control, practice management and emergency medicine during the COVID-19 pandemic, and further individuals and organisations will be added or consulted over the coming weeks.

Minimising the risk of COVID-19 transmission within and outwith general dental practices as a result of re-opening will bring significant implications for patient care and practice management. The group aims to support and enable a return to practice as soon as it is safe to do so, focussing on key areas to address, identifying or developing practical solutions, and feeding into national planning.

It is highly likely that the measures necessary to safely resume general dental practice will carry substantial financial implications, which will have a profound impact on both NHS and private practices. The increased burden on the NHS will be considerable, and it is clear that the safe treatment of the oral health needs of much of the population will only be possible with significant additional public funding.

The general dental profession has already returned to work in many countries, and the group will draw upon the research, advice and resources already published around the world, as well as those within the UK, adapting and adding to them as necessary to create guidance which is relevant and applicable to primary dental care throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as soon as possible.

FGDP(UK) publishes revised Standards in Dentistry

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (FGDP(UK)) has published the second edition of Standards in Dentistry, its flagship publication for general dental practitioners and their teams which acts as a guide to personal or practice-based quality assessment.

A comprehensive compendium of guidance and standards relevant to primary dental care, it sets out specific standards covering consultation and diagnosis, paediatric dentistry, orthodontics, management of acute pain, periodontics, endodontics, removable partial dentures, complete dentures, minor oral surgery, implant dentistry, management of dental trauma, direct, coronal and root surface restorations and indirect coronal restorations.

It also summarises almost 70 standards and guidelines publications by the Faculty and 30 other organisations, encompassing emergency dental care, examination and record-keeping, infection prevention and control, medical emergencies, medications management, oral health, pathology, patient information, practice management, prevention, radiography, restorative dentistry, risk management and communication, sedation, special care dentistry and staff training.

The development of the second edition was carried out by Professor David Moles and his colleagues at Peninsula Dental School, Ewen McColl, Christopher Tredwin, Robert Witton and Lorna Burns, and its publication follows consultation with a wide range of national dental bodies. Professor Moles and his team have fully revised and updated Standards in Dentistry to reflect the contemporary clinical, organisational and dento-legal contexts in which dentistry is practised, as well as changes in the evidence base since the first edition was published in 2006.

 

The standards in the new edition are focussed on practitioner processes rather than treatment outcomes, descriptions of the ‘unacceptable’ have been dispensed with, and the book adopts the Faculty’s ‘ABC’ (Aspirational, Basic, Conditional) notation for the grading of recommendations. Standards for making and receiving referrals, and for oral medicine, are also included for the first time, and the book includes a section on keeping up-to-date with changing guidelines and standards over time.

 

Celebrating the publication of the new edition, Ian Mills, Dean of FGDP(UK), said:

“The Faculty’s core function is to raise the standards of care delivered to patients, and the provision of guidance and standards by dentists, for dentists, is central to this. On behalf of the FGDP(UK), I would like to thank David Moles and his colleagues for their tireless dedication in compiling the second edition of Standards in Dentistry. It is an indispensable reference guide which will assist the whole dental team in identifying appropriate standards for the delivery of high quality care.”

 

Professor David Moles FFGDP(UK), Editor of Standards in Dentistry, added:

 

“The team at Peninsula Dental School are honoured to have been offered the opportunity by the FGDP to undertake a comprehensive update of the standards. We would like to thank all the individuals and organisations that have generously given their time and expertise to comment on the drafts of the second edition. In some cases we have had to resolve strongly-held but contradictory views held by peer-reviewers. This is an indication of the extent to which members of our profession care passionately about the standards of care we all endeavour to provide, and it also illustrates the subjective nature of clinical practice. Whilst the evidence base for primary care dentistry is constantly improving, it is clear that much remains almost as much an art as a science.”

To mark the publication of Standards in Dentistry, the Faculty is distributing copies to all its members, and new members who join this year will be sent a copy with their welcome pack. Non-members can buy it for £44.99 at www.fgdp.org.uk/shop, and until the end of 2018 FGDP is also offering a 25% discount on its complete set of five guidance publications, which also includes Selection Criteria for Dental Radiography, Clinical Examination and Record-Keeping, Antimicrobial Prescribing for General Dental Practitioners and Dementia-Friendly Dentistry.