15 July 2020

Dentists urged to move to Level 2 dental restrictions

COVID-19 update following consultation with Health Minister Jenny Mikakos and Chief Health Officer Prof Brett Sutton

In a briefing the ADAVB attended yesterday Health Minister Jenny Mikakos advised 342 health care workers have tested positive to COVID-19 since the pandemic commenced. Most of these were contracted in the community, but some are cases of healthcare setting-based transmission. This aligns with what we know about COVID-19 in the dental setting, with several instances of COVID-19 affecting dental practices in Victoria. To date, none of these has involved transmission in the clinical setting, with several cases involving members of the dental team contracting COVID-19 from other sources in the community, and one case of a patient who attended a dental appointment and subsequently tested positive.

We received a letter from the Chief Health Officer Prof Brett Sutton yesterday. He has noted the importance of avoiding procedures that generate contaminated aerosols unless rubber dam is used, and he has advised public dental services in metropolitan Melbourne and the Shire of Mitchell to operate at a minimum of Level 2 dental restrictions. The ADA Infection Control Committee met last night and supports the recommendation to maintain Level 2 dental restrictions for metropolitan Melbourne and the Shire of Mitchell. Although the government has not mandated Level 2 restrictions for the private sector, we are strongly encouraging all dental practices in metropolitan Melbourne and the Shire of Mitchell to continue to work at Level 2 restrictions during this period of heightened risk for the safety of their staff and patients. As the situation is moving quickly It is also recommended that continual risk assessments are done based on what is happening in your local area.

Find out more: adavb.org/resources/for-dental-professionals/covid-19