The latest information on dental restrictions in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria.
8 January 2021 Update
The COVID-19 outbreak that originated in Sydney prior to Christmas has resulted in a small outbreak in Victoria, with border restrictions back in place. There is now concern about an outbreak of the new UK strain in Brisbane. ADAVB is continuing to monitor these outbreaks closely. Patients who have returned from NSW or Brisbane should be isolating according to guidance from DHHS. Some patients may have visited exposure sites in Victoria that could be a potential site for acquisition. Dentists should ask patients if they have visited any of these exposure sites as part of their screening process, and defer non-urgent treatment if a patient has been at one of these sites during the period of risk. The list of exposure sites can be found here - https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/case-locations-and-outbreaks
Epidemiological risk – there is currently no community transmission in regional Victoria.
The Victorian Government has updated the road map for metropolitan Melbourne, and has now eased restrictions so that dentists can provide treatment according to ADA Level 1 guidelines. Refer to the table below for more details on the current restrictions and how to risk assess patients for treatment. Refer to the Level 1 Decision Tree and ADA Dental Restrictions for more detailed information.
Note: There was some confusion about the Level 1 Decision Tree requiring rubber dam for ALL aerosol-generating procedures. The ADA Infection Control Committee has now updated this document to remove this inconsistency. The Level 1 Decision Tree for low risk patients now states 'Provide treatments permitted under Level 1 restrictions using standard precautions. Use a pre-procedural mouthwash, and where possible, a dental dam for procedures generating aerosols.' Where it is not possible (for example ultrasonic scaling or orthodontic de-banding), rubber dam is NOT required.
Dentists should assess the COVID-19 risk for each patient prior to treatment using clinical and epidemiological risk factors.
Clinical risk factors
- Fever >= 37.5 or history of fever (night sweats, chills) OR acute respiratory infection (i.e. cough, shortness of breath, sore throat) OR loss of smell or loss of taste.
Epidemiological risk factors
- Close contact with a confirmed or probable case in the past 14 days
- International travel in the past 14 days
- Healthcare, aged or residential aged care workers and staff with direct patient contact
- People who have lived in or travelled through a geographically localised area with elevated risk of community transmission, as defined by public health authorities.
There is currently low community transmission in metropolitan Melbourne. Current data on community transmission can be found at dhhs.vic.gov.au/averages-easing-restrictions-covid-19
More ADA COVID-19 resources are available at ada.org.au/COVID19.