COvid-19 & CompreMed's Best Practice Guidelines
COVID-19 has put a spotlight on the importance and need for meticulous Infection Prevention and Control Practices. These are defined as evidence-based practices and procedures that when applied consistently in health care settings, can prevent or reduce the risk of transmission of microorganisms to health care providers, clients/patients/residents and visitors.
COVID-19 has changed the way we practice to ensure the safety of claimants while undergoing assessments. We are continually reviewing updated federal and provincial Ministry of Health Guidelines for health care workers and ambulatory care centres to comply with the most up-to date recommendations. As we re-start non-essential services, the following outlines our current practices in accordance with recommended guidelines.
Passive Screening- Pre-appointment
All patients are screened for COVID -19 symptoms, exposure to a COVID-19 positive individual and recent travel. We do this via email or telephonically 48 hours prior to the scheduled- appointment time.
During the pre-appointment discussion, examinee is advised of the following:
- To contact CompreMed should they develop any symptoms prior to the appointment
- They should wear a mask to the appointment
- They will be screened again on-site and if positive, will be provided with direction to contact Public Health or their family physician
- The clinic will have them use hand sanitizer upon entry and exit
- The clinic office may have installed plexi-glass barriers in the reception/clinic areas
- To maintain physical distancing, the clinic may have restricted the number of patients in the waiting room or in the clinic/office.
- Clinicians and staff will maintain a 2 metre physical distance
- Staff will be wearing PPE (personal protective equipment) and may include the following (gown, gloves, mask, face-shield or goggles), dependant on the type of assessment and ability to physically
- Hand hygiene will be practiced by
- If they need to be accompanied by someone during the appointment, that individual will also be
In the clinics/assessment and treatment areas – Infection Control Best Practices
Claimants are screened again on site upon arrival with COVID q-19 screening questions.
Hand Hygiene- hand hygiene is recommended upon arrival and during the assessment particularly if it is a physical assessment. Hand hygiene with hand sanitizer is recommended for 20 seconds and should be completed before and after arrival and before and after the clinical assessment. Alternatively hand washing for 20 seconds can be done.
Personal Protective Equipment is worn by all staff, including reception, nurses and physicians. These include mask and/or face shield, eye protection (goggles or face shield), gown and gloves. Depends on the type of assessment (physical or psychological) and ability to physically distance for 2 metres.
Masks are worn by claimants and has now become mandatory in most public spaces.
In the unlikely event that someone arrive with a cough or respiratory symptoms, they should be instructed in proper cough etiquette (cough into their sleeve) and put on a mask. The clinic should have some paper masks, tissues and a hands-free waste receptacle available for this purpose.
A 2 metre physical distance between individuals is maintained in the waiting room. If space does not allow for this, patients may be asked to wait in their vehicles until the appointment time and they can enter the clinical assessment room directly.
Appropriate environmental cleaning and disinfection of clinical and office areas should be done between patients with appropriate disinfectant. This includes beds, chairs, stethoscopes, BP cuffs and any other items used during the assessment
Waiting rooms (surfaces, chair rails, door handles) should be cleaned regularly with disinfectant wipes. (q2 hours).
Where possible assessments are being offered to claimants virtually primarily for psychological assessments.
Some clinical assessors are choosing to complete part of their assessment virtually (videoconferencing or telephonically).
References -COVID 19