Dentist offices open May 1 with hopes to decrease emergency room visits

Governor Ralph Northam announced dental offices will be open for business with guidelines in place.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Some Hampton Roads dental offices will be opening up again for procedures other than emergency visits. 

“I’m announcing that elective surgery and dental procedures can resume when the public order expires at midnight tomorrow night,” Governor Ralph Northam said on Wednesday. 

Dr. Mary Lewis is prepared for her patients to come in.

“Just today I was able to procure those masks and normally we would have called the Monday patients and said, ‘Don’t come in.’ But now that we have that equipment, we’re ready to go,” said Lewis. 

Oral surgeon Dr. Scott Goodove explained the opening will help the backlog of patients needing care.

“And with dental, a lot of this stuff the longer it goes without being treated, they turn into emergencies. So with opening up, it’s going to help

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Local dentist researches technology to help make office visits safer in time of COVID-19

CHICAGO — Oral health can be a concern for people who are sheltering at home.

Dentistry is defined by close contact with patients, and distancing in the era of COVID-19 poses new challenges.

From the air down to the water, a local doctor is bringing high tech infection control to his neighborhood office.

When news of the virus shutting down China made its way to the U.S, Dr. Michael Czarkowski sunk his teeth deep into research.

“We’ve got to come up with a plan and I’m a pro-active person so I tried to figure out what do I have to do in my practice to protect my patients, my team and my family,” he said.

The dentist who typically sees 80 to 100 patients a week now sees about five for emergency procedures only.

And with worries about COVID-19, the phone isn’t exactly ringing off the hook.

“I can just

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Va. Gov. Ralph Northam to allow non-emergency doctor, dentist visits

Northam (D) said he was lifting the ban on elective surgeries he imposed five weeks ago, allowing doctors, dentists and veterinarians to resume seeing patients on a non-emergency basis beginning Friday.

That ban, which applied to hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, dental offices and veterinarians amid concerns that the state’s hospitals would be overwhelmed by a surge in coronavirus cases, was originally scheduled to expire last week, but Northam extended it to May 1.

On Wednesday he confirmed that he would not extend it further, touting the decision as proof that the commercial and social restrictions he has imposed have successfully slowed the spread of the virus.

Northam said the change also was possible because of the work that state and medical officials have done to secure more capacity for treating and testing coronavirus patients. But he warned that if cases surge again, it might be necessary to reinstate restrictions.


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