Office Procedures During COVID-19

Latest Masking Guidance

As per the latest DPH guidance, CT residents will no longer be required to wear face masks in Connecticut hospitals, outpatient health care settings, and homeless shelters after a state masking order expired on Friday, April 15th. Dental offices are healthcare outpatient centers. 


Additionally, dentists can continue to administer vaccines but dental hygienists cannot.

DPH Website

CDC Guidance for Dental Settings

CDC Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations for Healthcare Personnel During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic 

Summary of Recent Changes 
Updates as of February 2, 2022

Due to concerns about increased transmissibility of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant, this guidance is being updated to enhance protection for healthcare personnel, patients, and visitors and to address concerns about potential impacts on the healthcare system given a surge in SARS-CoV-2 infections. These updates will be refined as additional information becomes available to inform recommended actions.

  • Empiric use of Transmission-Based Precautions (quarantine) is recommended for patients who have had close contact with someone with SARS-CoV-2 infection if they are not up to date with all recommended COVID-19 vaccine doses.
    • In general, quarantine is not needed for asymptomatic patients who are up to date with all recommended COVID-19 vaccine doses or who have recovered from SARS-CoV-2 infection in the prior 90 days; potential exceptions are described in the guidance. However, some of these patients should still be tested as described in the testing section of the guidance.
  • A test-based strategy and (if available) consultation with infectious disease experts is now recommended for determining the duration of Transmission-Based Precautions for patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection who are moderately to severely immunocompromised.
  • Included additional examples when universal respirator use could be considered

Additional updates that will have implications for healthcare facilities were made in the following guidance documents:


CDC released interim recommendations due to staffing shortages in health care facilities. Below you will find the chart, which demonstrates guidelines for work restrictions for healthcare personnel with COVID-19 Infection and Exposures.


328856-a_quarantineisolation-by-contingency-in-hcp-v5

To view a larger version of the chart, click here



CDC Interim Guidance for Managing Healthcare Personnel with SARS-CoV-2 Infection or Exposure to SARS-CoV-2 –

Summary of Recent Changes
Updates as of January 21, 2022

Due to concerns about increased transmissibility of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant, this guidance is being updated to enhance protection for healthcare personnel (HCP), patients, and visitors, and to address concerns about potential impacts on the healthcare system given a surge of SARS-CoV-2 infections. These updates will be refined as additional information becomes available to inform recommended actions.

  • Updated infographic and text in guidance to include links to CDC’s definition of what it means to be up to date with all recommended COVID-19 vaccine doses.
  • In general, asymptomatic HCP who have recovered from SARS-CoV-2 infection in the prior 90 days do not require work restriction following a higher-risk exposure.


On July 15, 2021 the ADA released its Update to Office Procedures During COVID-19, which provides the latest information dentists need for conducting COVID-19 workplace hazard assessments and making practice decisions. 

The update covers issues such as having a safety plan for COVID-19 exposure and control, best practices for assessing and managing workplace hazards and pre-appointment screenings for patients.

Download the ADA "Update to Office Procedures During COVID-19"

On June 10, 2021, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued an Emergency Temporary Standard to protect health care workers from COVID-19. The ADA has since reviewed the document and determined that dental practices are mostly exempt from OSHA's new emergency temporary standard to protect health care workers from COVID-19. Those most likely to be affected by the new standard include hospital-based oral surgery practices and dentists who provide care for COVID-19 patients.

If an office is covered under the emergency temporary standard, it is mandated to do so. If an office is exempt, it still should do a hazard assessment and written plan as recommended in OSHA's Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs.

In order for dental offices to be exempt, dental practices need to continue to conduct workplace-specific hazard assessments for COVID-19 and continue pre-appointment patient screenings to identify individuals with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, rescheduling their appointments if possible or referring them as necessary.

To help dentists understand the OSHA emergency temporary standard, the ADA has created a fact sheet that includes some key points to help walk dentists through the process. Visit www.ada.org/resources/coronavirus/covid-19-practice-resources.

Connecticut Department of Public Health

The Department of Public Health released guidance to provide a better understand of the State’s recently modified mask and face covering policies that are now in effect. 

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