COVID-19’s rapid sweep across the country has forced optical practices to make rapid clinical management decisions. Some optometrists temporarily shuttered their businesses due to the pandemic, while others began to offer emergency appointment services and telehealth.
As mandatory restrictions begin to lift in many locations, optometrists are beginning to open their doors for routine care. But this time around they will implement strict social distancing guidelines and take unprecedented precautions to limit the spread of infection.
Some of the Changes You Should Expect to See
1) Signage throughout the office spelling out new steps and protocols to ensure maximum safety for staff and patients alike.
2) Social distancing will be the new norm. Packed waiting rooms will be a thing of the past. Instead, clinics will be spacing out seating to reduce capacity and scheduling in longer intervals to minimize patient interactions.
3) Certain practices will require appointments for individuals to see and try on the array of frames and sunglasses.
4) Methods will be introduced to decrease the number of surfaces a patient touches. This will include facilitating cashless payments.
5) Patients who aren’t feeling well or who have been in contact with someone who is ill will be asked to reschedule their appointment.
6) There will be more time between appointments, to allow the staff to thoroughly clean and disinfect before and after each patient’s visit.
7) Many eye practitioners will be wearing safety goggles and face masks, particularly during any up-close contact with the patient. Patients may also be asked to wear masks.
8) Individuals with suspected eye infections will be put in a special area or examined remotely through the use of technology.
9) Practices will frequently wipe down any patient area, including chairs, counters and doorknobs. Every exam room will be completely disinfected between appointments. In the dispensary, frames will be promptly disinfected after patients touch them.
10) Patients and staff will be requested to wash or disinfect their hands upon entering the office. Village Optical in Winnipeg has strict hygiene and sterilization protocols in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infections.
If you’re dealing with a vision or eye health issue and need to visit Village Optical, or if you would like some more information on how we have adapted our practice due to COVID-19, please don’t hesitate in contacting us. We’ll be happy to assist you however we can.
Village Optical serves patients from Winnipeg, Manitoba.