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
- Signage throughout the office spelling out new steps and protocols to ensure maximum safety for staff and patients alike.
- 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. Some clinics may ask patients to wait in their cars until they receive a text message from the office stating that they can come in.
- Certain practices will require appointments for individuals to see and try on the array of frames and sunglasses at the dispensary. Bookings will be in 15-20 minute increments, accessed by one individual at a time.
- Methods will be introduced to decrease the number of surfaces a patient touches. This will include leaving the clinic’s front door open (or replacing it with a motion-activated door), facilitating cashless payments, and encouraging patients to fill out registration forms online.
- Patients who aren’t feeling well or who have been in contact with someone who is ill will be asked to reschedule their appointment two to three weeks in the future.
- Measuring one’s temperature at the entrance will become commonplace — this goes for both staff and patients. Though not the most reliable screening tool, as those who are asymptomatic can still spread the virus, it will identify some people who aren’t well. Anyone registering 100.4° or above will be sent home.
- There will be more time between appointments, to allow the staff to thoroughly clean and disinfect before and after each patient’s visit.
- 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.
- Individuals with suspected ocular infections will be put in a special containment area.
- 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.
- Patients will be requested to wash or disinfect their hands upon entering the office and when entering different rooms. in 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 , 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.
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As we navigate new processes and protocols as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, you may be wondering, what’s the difference between Essential and Non-Essential Eye Care.
Essential Eye Care services include treatment for medical conditions, including urgent care needs that keep patients from carrying out their regular daily routines. These include:
- Blurred vision
- Broken or lost eyewear
- Eye trauma
- Vision loss
- Contact lens-related pain
- Flashes or floating objects in the eye
- Light sensitivity
- Double vision
- Drooping eyelid
- Severe or recurring headaches
We are equipped to handle your Essential Eye Care needs so you do not have visit the ER – which may put you at risk of exposure to infection while also potentially taking from patients with critical conditions having no other alternatives.
Non-Essential Eye Care services might also be called “routine,” and not impeding a patient from his/her day-to-day activities, such as:
- Routine eye exam with no problems
- First time routine contact lens fittings
As always, our top priority is always your well-being. If you have questions or concerns about any eye health or eye care services – reach out! We are here to help you in any way we can!
Happy Holidays from Gailmard Eye Center! Our office will be closed December 23-December 25, we will reopen Tuesday, December 26 at 8:30am with our normal business hours!
Happy Memorial Day Weekend!! Our office will be open til 5 today (Friday) and 8:30-1 tomorrow (Saturday). We are closed on Monday but will return on Tuesday. Be safe and have fun!!
Now through April 31, get $40 off any pair of sunglasses*!
Introducing new Steve Madden frames! Come check them out!
Our office will be closed Monday, January 30, 2017 for an in-office seminar. Our normal business hours will resume on Tuesday, January 31, 2017. Thank you for your understanding!
Our 2016 Holiday Hours are as follows:
Saturday December 24: Closed
Sunday December 25: Closed
Monday December 26: Closed
Saturday December 31: 8:30 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.
Sunday January 1: Closed
Monday January 2: 8:30 a.m.- 7:00 p.m.