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Medical Office Health & Safety Precautions

patients waiting in medical facility
As our world is slowly returning to a semblance of normal, we’re seeing more and more places opening up. There is a feeling of relief with seeing the “Now Open!” signs in restaurants, theaters, and gyms. With that feeling of relief comes a feeling of wanting to catch up on what we’ve missed- including medical check ups and doctor appointments.

After a year trapped inside, many of us are finding ourselves behind on annual physicals, dental cleanings, skin check ups and more. If you have been hesitant to schedule your visit due to COVID, you can rest easier knowing that many medical offices are leading the way in health and safety precautions in our post-COVID world.

Wondering how they are keeping you safe? We’re here to help. Let’s talk about what to expect when you walk through the door of a medical office, or even before you get there.

Safety Solution #1: Take a Deep Breath – Better Indoor Air Quality

Over the past few decades indoor air quality has been declining. And with COVID being more transmissible indoors, many people have been wary of going inside any building they don’t absolutely have to. Many medical offices have HEPA, or “high efficiency particulate air”, machines or filters. HEPA filters have a larger pressure drop than normal filters. The filtration efficiency, however, is much better so the quality of air is improved. These machines have proven to be highly effective, with recommendations from ASHRAE, the CDC and the EPA.

Air cleaners and systems equipped with HEPA filters can provide a superior level of filtration which can be an effective strategy to help combat environments that contain viruses and germs. Viruses and germs come in different shapes and sizes which can impact the filtration efficiency so it’s best to contact an air filtration expert to make sure you have the best solution. For more information on how HEPA machines improve air quality and help decrease the presence of viruses, look at our earlier blog post! HEPA machines and filters are available for a variety of buildings (including homes and office buildings), but are very commonly used in medical offices to decrease the presence of viruses and other germs.

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Safety Solution #2: Clean Hands, Clean Hearts- Hand Sanitizer and Mask Wearing

One of the most important and highly recommended safety precautions by the CDC is the availability of hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer is more present than ever before, with some available at various locations around the office. You’ll likely find some at…

  • The front desk
  • Entry ways
  • Patient rooms
  • Bathrooms
  • By chairs/waiting rooms
  • Spaced throughout the office

This is an easy and quick way to ensure that we are limiting the spread of any germs. The CDC explains more about the importance of hand sanitizer here. Offices will also offer more hand washing stations in bathrooms and patient rooms, if you prefer to use soap and water.

Most medical offices will continue to require all to wear masks indoors. This ensures that you are preventing others from getting sick if you are not feeling well – or even if you are! During your appointment, your doctor may have you continue wearing your mask in the small room. All professionals working in the building will likely be wearing masks. Learn more about the effectiveness of masks here!

Safety Solution #3: Wait!..You’ll All Set- Waiting Rooms and Wait Times Post-COVID

Waiting rooms were the place that people congregated in pre-COVID times. Reading magazines, playing with games, scrolling through social media. Now, those waiting rooms stuffed full of chairs and people moving quickly around are different.

Chairs are spaced in groups, and in many instances at least six feet apart from others. This allows people to sit with caretakers or children they might have arrived with, while spaced at the recommended indoor distance. Wait times are cut down immensely, as touchless and online check-in becomes more common.

Medical offices are also offering phone screenings before your appointment, making sure you feel well and are not exhibiting signs of coronavirus. There are limited side tables and no magazines available as well. You can also expect to have your temperature taken before walking into a patient room. This is CDC recommended and ensures that you are not exhibiting a fever or abnormally high temperature.

No Need To Wait To Schedule Your Next Doctor’s Appointment

Medical offices are leading the country in safety and health precautions in our post-COVID world. With increased availability of hand sanitizer and mask-wearing, HEPA machines, and waiting room changes, your medical professional has multiple ways to protect you while you visit.

You can bring that feeling of safety with you, too. By carrying hand sanitizer, a mask (just in case!), and social distancing, you can protect yourself and your family even more.