Following a long period of closure due to the COVID-19 epidemic, on 18th May 2020 we opened our clinic doors for urgent face-to-face appointments only. The decision to do so followed guidance from the government, Public Health England and the British Chiropractic Association. In order to protect the welfare of our patients, staff and the wider community, we undertook a thorough risk assessment. A number of “medium” to “high” risks were initially found, but after implementing strategies to mitigate these risks, we believe we have successfully reduced these to “low risk” and so made the decision to re-open. For the full risk assessment and how we intend to mitigate the risk of infection click here.
For a shortened summary of the changes we are making see below:
- All patients will be screened for COVID-19 infection risk before they attend. Non urgent cases will be advised to book a telehealth appointment instead of a face-to-face appointment
- There will only be one practitioner and one patient on site at any one time, no other members of the family or friends will be allowed to attend. There will be no receptionist onsite.
- Patients will wait for their appointment outside or in the car. The practitioner will collect them.
- The patient will sanitise their hands on entry to the building and take a disposable mask if they wish
- The patient will pay for their appointment before entering the treatment room using card, no cash. If they booked online they will have already paid online.
- The practitioner will be wearing single-use gloves and aprons (PPE) and will have sanitised all surfaces before the patient enters the treatment room. If the patient or practitioner prefers, the practitioner may also use a mask and/or visor.
- Patients will not get changed before their appointment. No fabric towels or bench covers will be used. Only disposable tissues and wipe-clean materials.
- There may be some changes to treatment, for example, massage techniques may not be suitable as the practitioner will be using gloves and the risk of cross contamination via creams and massage bottles is higher.
- After your appointment the practitioner may schedule you another appointment, you will then sanitise your hands and leave the clinic via a back door.
- The practitioner will then wipe down all treatment room surfaces, change and dispose of their single-use PPE into special clinical waste bins.
- At the end of a morning or afternoon shift the entire clinic will undergo a deep clean and ventilation by the practitioner.
- The first hour of each morning or afternoon will be reserved for patients who are deemed at higher risk of COVID 19 complications as these are deemed the lowest risk times of day (following a deep clean of the clinic from the previous shift)
- Members of staff will not travel to work on public transport and they will have separate work clothes which they will change into when they arrive to work. They will then change out of these clothes before they leave work.
- There are Public Health England posters all around clinic re-iterating how to minimise infection risk
- Due to increase costs of equipment, clinical waste and operating fees, plus the increased risk of working for our members of staff, the directors have deemed it neccesary to increase the cost of appointments by 2 pounds. As it stands this is a temporary measure until normality resumes
Thank you for your understanding these changes and we appreciate your support in maintaining high hygiene standards.