Patient News for September 2020: 🦠 the story continues…
So we re-opened in a limited way at the end of June, it has been really lovely catching up with everyone again in clinic 😊 Looks as though we have survived the first couple of months back, so it’s time to review the situation…
As before, we still have to work with an eye on safety for everyone, patients and staff alike. As before, we will continue to work whilst making the assumption that anyone and everyone is potentially a source of coronavirus infection - this way because we have already taken all necessary precautions we won’t have to close if someone reports shortly after they’ve been in that they have covid-19 symptoms, and more importantly we will not then have to phone a whole day’s patients to tell them that they need to isolate for 14 days too… still better all round really! So when you see the changes we have made, including the PPE worn, be assured it’s for this reason (ie it’s not at all personal to you!). We should all then be able to remain Covid-19 free.
So what’s new?
We have been tackling botox and filler so far, but only for patients who have had this done before. We will now be able to see patients looking for botulinum toxin / filler for the first time. The process of assessment and consent takes a bit longer than a normal appointment, so we plan to manage this as follows: Distance - there will be at least two metres (usually more) between doctor and patient during the discussion phase. It works best with patient sitting on the treatment couch, and doc sitting in the lobby. Direct line of sight to each other but a goodly distance apart. Ventilation - window and doors open to allow movement of fresh air through the treatment room. PPE - as before we will wear PPE appropriate to the situation when required to be close to patients. Patients can help by wearing a face covering as able - clearly this will not be possible all the way through. We will continue to decontaminate everything between each patient (more stringent than ‘standard’ infection control measures). It takes about 10-15 mins to do - Mrs Mop is my new name… 😩 Otherwise, steps we are taking to keep safe are:
Short appointments where possible 🗓- minimises exposure to another ‘household’. This means less chatting from me (possibly the most difficult part of this whole thing! 🤐) Limited use of clinic space - we will use only the small entry lobby and the treatment room for now, so that I am able to decontaminate absolutely everything in between patients. This will mean unfortunately that there will be NO ACCESS TO TOILET FACILITIES ⛔️🧻 for the time being in clinic. One patient only in the clinic at any time - if you need to bring family members they will unfortunately need to wait in your car if safe to do so, again apologies for this. PAYMENT 💰with card is preferred - we can still take a cash payment if this is absolutely necessary, but please, if you can pay with a card this would be ideal. Doc will be wearing PPE 😷 - usual green scrubs, plus apron, gloves, mask +/- visor. … if you were wondering “who doesn’t look good in a plastic apron?” 🤔 then I will answer that question for you when you come! Pre-appointment screening - we will be checking in with you by phone a day or two before your appointment to ensure that you don’t have any symptoms suggestive of Covid-19, and then again when you arrive at your appointment. Screening questions and temperature 🤒 check (in-ear thermometer) will be done at the door, before you come in, again this is to try to keep this service Covid-free. GEL station for hand cleansing upon arrival. 🧴 2 metre social distancing ⬅️2️⃣➡️ will be observed.
So as you can see, it will feel a little bit different when you come to the clinic. Hopefully not intimidating or worrying for anyone - I hope that the explanations above help to clarify why we have had to make these changes. Over time I hope that we will be able to return to normal, but how fast this happens is impossible to say at the moment.
What happens next? What about laser treatments?
So we are pretty much offering everything as normal now for injectable treatments. I’ve been doing a bit of research into laser treatments, which are not considered safe as yet unfortunately. Laser safety experts are of the opinion that laser hair removal and laser tattoo removal are both considered aerosol generating procedures (AGPs), so are not allowed at the moment. Debate is ongoing about whether scavenging systems for collecting any spray/smoke produced during such treatments are actually helpful/reduce the risk - it seems they may actually make things worse. So with apologies, there is no chance of restarting any laser treatments at the moment - it may be well into next year before this becomes available again.
So FAQ: I’m having laser hair removal, can I make an appointment for this? NOT YET. This will unfortunately be one of the last treatments to return, as it is classified as an aerosol generating procedure (AGP) - there are often tiny particles of hair released during laser hair removal, hence the aerosol generating classification. We are not allowed to do anything aerosol generating unless as an emergency procedure at the moment, which clearly this is not. Apologies, we have no idea how long this will take at the moment. I’m having radio frequency treatment, can I make an appointment for this? Again, NOT YET, we will resume this treatment when able, but this will need to wait until we return to standard infection control procedures rather than full decontamination between patients. Apologies, we have no idea how long this will take at the moment. I’m having laser tattoo removal, can I make an appointment for this? Again NOT YET. This will unfortunately be the last treatment to return, as it is classified as an aerosol generating procedure (AGP) - there are often tiny spatters of blood during laser tattoo removal, hence the aerosol generating classification. We are not allowed to do anything aerosol generating unless as an emergency procedure at the moment, which clearly this is not. Again apologies, really not able to say at the moment how long until this will become available. Can I bring my kids with me? Very happy for them to wait in your car, but sadly they cannot come into clinic at the moment. How will payment work? You will be able to take your credit card receipt at the time of payment, and I will record the payment in the receipt book later on as normal. If you want me to send the written receipt to you by post then please just let me know.
And finally… 💰
Having discussed this with many of you over the last few years, we have at last had a chance to review our pricing structure. This has resulted in some changes - please take the time to look at the website www.sageaesthetic.co.uk/price-guide.html# to review. This is the first time we have reviewed prices in ten years, so we hope you understand.
Looking forward to seeing you all soon Take care in the meantime!