When There are Higher Mountains to Climb

Teams rallying during COVID challenges

I was reminded yesterday as I escorted my daughter to her 6-month recare visit of the new responsibilities that have become the new normal in the dental environment for the past 9 months that Covid-19 has entered our lives. The BP and temperature checks, the pre-procedural rinsing, etc. all occurred prior to even getting back to the treatment room.

The shifting of patients and guests in the reception area in order to minimize any co-mingling, the phone calls and texts that are sent to and from those waiting in their cars or away from the office, all done in an attempt to keep everyone distant.

Then we get seated. There are the added measures that the clinical and hygiene teams are required to take. This is not to say that we had not been overly aware of asepsis and infection control before this pandemic–our awareness has always been stellar in dentistry. Ramping up our game is necessary now, and the steps we must take (and unfortunately the added expense) is something we just can’t avoid.

So, what does this mean to the stamina, and in many cases, the emotional level of doctors and team members?

I’m not going to sugarcoat this, because it can be tough and demanding on everyone. And the big thing to consider with it all is that our patients–as the commercial once said–“Should never see us sweat”. They count on us to make their visits as comfortable and non-threatening as possible while we are now administering new protocols and basically asking more of them.

Now it’s time for the shout out!!

Our visit yesterday was with my longtime friend, Dr. Diana Batoon of Scottsdale, Arizona. Once we moved from Tucson to the Valley last month, we could finally establish ourselves as patients. It was clear to both Shari and I that she and her amazing team really have it mastered! Our visit was seamlessly executed, and everyone was in concert with each another. This was Shari’s first visit, and with her special needs in mind, they didn’t overwhelm her and considered her specific special care while managing the additional duties added to their repertoire. She left the office smiling and filled me in on all the aspects of her visit.

The team is appreciated. The team is respected. It is so obvious that they enjoy working together and clearly learned how to budget their time. I had the pleasure of placing a number of these awesome people who managed to take a minute to acknowledge me, although briefly, as they mentioned that “they have patients to attend to.” I understand and grasp the fact that they have a lot on their plate, but it was no surprise to me that the flow of patients was smooth, giving the team ample time to oversee their posts. They worked together well, each understanding their jobs and jumping in to help others if/when necessary. This is paramount when it comes to being sure that everyone can uphold their added responsibilities.

Needless to say, Diana is not at a loss for patients. The practice dynamics and culture make it easy to choose Bonita Dental for one’s dental care. This is not necessarily a sales pitch, but the observations I made proved to me as an outsider that team members will rise to the occasion as long as there is proper support from the top!

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