Putting Your Health & Safety First
We're beyond ready to get back to work and see everyone that we have missed so much! We hope this letter finds you healthy, happy and prepared to ease back into regular routines. Much has changed since we saw you last.
We're all still coming to grips with the COVID-19 pandemic and events triggered by it. We want to update you on our office, it's measured reopening, and the steps we are taking to ensure we do everything possible to keep our patients and our team healthy.
We will be reopening on Thursday, May 7, 2020. We will be following rigorous scheduling protocols and office measures to ensure the safety and well-being of you, our patients, and the team members at Hunter Family Orthodontics.
We ask for your patience. We had to cancel over 500 appointments, and we know that there is a strong desire to get your treatment back on track as soon as possible. We will eventually, but it will not be as efficient as we are used to in our office. This benefits everyone.
We'll have to be very firm in our processes and procedures. They have been well-thought-out and reviewed countless times by Dr. Hunter and our entire team.
We have already begun rescheduling patients on a first-canceled-first-rescheduled basis, which is fair, efficient, and will serve everyone with getting back on track. Our goal is to contact every patient by the end of this week, so please be patient with us and do not call unless you have not heard from us by Friday afternoon.
Our office procedures have temporarily changed and will include the following:
- There will be a limit of 40 patient appointments per day, roughly half of the regular appointment load. The points outlined below will lend clarity to this decision.
- We will be referring all patients to complete a COVID-19 consent form and a health questionnaire before their appointment.
- Please wait for our office to call or text you to reschedule your appointment. We have a very accurate and comprehensive list of every appointment canceled.
- Emergencies will continue to be defined by pain or bleeding. For now, broken brackets and ill-fitting aligner trays don't constitute an emergency.
- When you arrive for your appointment, please stay in your car. Please call (281.298.0000) or text (281.771.0243) our office upon arrival, and an HFO team member will meet you at the door.
- Only the patient that is being treated will be allowed to enter the office. The exceptions to this rule will be for very young patients and patients who need special assistance.
- Please bring your own mask and wear it to your appointment. Federal and state guidelines for social distancing and wearing masks in businesses continue, so bring the mask you have been using. If you do not have your own, we will provide one; however, personal protective equipment supplies are dangerously low. If we run out, we will have to close the office again until the supply-chain is back to normal.
- Your temperature will be taken by a team member using a touchless thermometer. If your temperature is over 100 degrees F, you will be asked to leave and not return for the specified 14-day self-quarantine requirement.
- A simple questionnaire assessing your health will be asked of all patients as well. Any question indicating recent exposure to someone with COVID-19 or having signs and symptoms, that patient will be asked to leave and not return for the specified 14-day self-quarantine requirement.
- Please maintain the 6-foot social distancing guidelines when in the office until seated in the treatment chair.
- We have closed down our tooth brushing station to limit any risk of exposure. For this reason, PLEASE brush your teeth and gums before you come to your appointment.
- We will have a diluted peroxide solution that we may require you to rinse with for certain procedures. This will assist in creating a healthy oral environment for the HFO team to work in.
- Patients will be seated every-other-chair in the office to maintain social distancing, which is one of the reasons for the 40 patients/day schedule.
- We ask for understanding while we will try to address all of your treatment needs during your visit. Individuals with an abundance of broken brackets may not have everything completed during this visit due to strict scheduling times.
- For parents waiting in the car, we will call/text you with a treatment update, and provide a few available appointment times for the next visit.
- If you wish to speak to Dr. Hunter, you can schedule a call at the end of the day when we are finished seeing patients.
- It is required that everyone set up auto-payments on their accounts if they have not done so already. Please call the office to set this up.
- We will take the temperatures of every team member, including Dr. Hunter, upon arrival to work. Any team member with a temperature of 100 degrees F or above will go home and follow the same guidelines as outlined previously.
- Every team member will answer the health questionnaire that our patients are required to answer. If any questions disqualify the team member, they will be sent home following the same procedures we are asking our patients to follow.
- We may look like aliens! Orthodontics is relatively non-invasive, but you will see us wearing a bit more gear to protect our team and our patients. This might mean we are wearing thicker masks, surgical gowns, and face shields for certain procedures. If you wish to know more about our protocols, just ask!
We are so grateful for every one of our patients, and this time away has only served to make us even more thankful for each of you. You're the life-force of our practice, and this is why we are taking your safety VERY seriously. We ask for your patience and understanding.
Please expect that your treatment progress has been delayed, as has your estimated completion time. Obviously, we wish that were not the case. Please forgive us as we are focusing on getting each of you back on track while not exposing our team members or patients to unnecessary risk.
Lastly, we expect an increase in our phone volume and ask that you please leave a message if you do not receive an answer. We'll call you back as soon as possible. You can also email us at [email protected].
We miss you and cannot wait to see you!
Dr. Ross Hunter, Lacy, Emily, Melody, Bailey, Karen, Cassie, Summer, America, and Jessica
Still Available Virtually
If you don't feel comfortable coming into our office yet, you’re still welcome to complete a virtual visit or consultation.
If you’re an observation or retainer check patient, please complete a virtual visit instead of scheduling an in-office appointment.