Sadly, it is now clear that we are experiencing the second wave of Coronavirus. The Government has announced of a tiered lock-down system, leaving many parts of the country in a semi-lock down. With the constantly changing advice and regulations, many dental practices are asking how to prepare for the second wave of Coronavirus.
The good news is we now know what to do during the uncertainty caused by COVID. We made it through the first wave and have all learned and adapted from the experience.
This time around there has been no mention of Dental Practices closing, even in Tier 3 areas. Practices have all invested heavily in PPE and safety measures, so there should be no need for mass closures as we experienced earlier this year.
However, patients may be nervous and unsure of what is allowed as government advice changes rapidly and area’s get placed in lockdown.
Regular and clear communication with patients will help them understand the current situation and what you can offer.
Earlier this year many practices experienced patients becoming frustrated when surprised with the news that routine appointments were cancelled. This could have been avoided, or at least reduced, with clear patient communications informing them of the services available.
So, put a plan in place now to increase patient communication. This may be the opposite to the first time around, where you are informing your patients that they can still visit, rather than telling them to stay away.
The emphasis should be on your dental practices being safe and COVID secure.
1) Social Media
Patients are turning to social media to gain information. So, keeping your profiles up to date is highly recommended. You can add images, videos and messages in real-time to ensure patients have the most up to date information on your opening practices. It’s also a great place to add links to your website for more detailed information.
2) Website updates
Keep your website up to date with clear information and COVID resources. We recommend adding a pop-up that appears for website visitors reassuring them you are open, and also including a section on your website dedicated to information about COVID and the changes that patients can expect at the practice.
3) Virtual Consultations
Virtual consultations offer a socially distanced way to discuss treatments with new patients, and communicate with your existing patient base if they have concerns about their oral health.
Email can be a great solution for getting information out there if you have an important message you need to communicate to lots of patients.
In-practice signage can really help reassure your patients during thier visit. Signage from instructions on how to enter, new COVID regulations, and reassuring messages about safety can all help communicate with your patients during unsettling times.
If you want to discuss your COVID communication strategy please get in touch. We’re here to help and ensure you successfully navigate the second wave.