The dental practice I work in is an open concept office. What are the barrier requirements between dental chairs?
There are a number of different factors to consider. These include spacing, physical barriers, air exchange in the clinic and mitigation strategies to reduce aerosols. There should be physical barriers of adequate height and length between operatories and 2 metres spacing between operatories.
If you practice in an open concept office with no physical barriers separating chairs and you are performing an AGP, treat one patient only in the space. This does not apply when performing a non-AGP procedure and physical distancing measures are met.
The air exchange in the clinic should be optimized to reduce the aerosols generated with AGPs. In addition, the use of dental dam (whenever possible) and the effective use of HVE and four-handed dentistry will significantly reduce aerosols.
The physical barriers between chairs must be solid so that they can be cleaned and disinfected. In addition to Plexiglas barriers, supplemental barriers, may be used to direct staff/ patent flow.