A message from OCC Eyecare Doctors and Staff:
The continued spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Canada and around the world has understandably raised concerns for you and your families. At OCC Eyecare, the well-being of our patients as well as our staff and employees is of the deepest concern to us. We want you to know that your safety and well-being will remain our top priority as this situation continues to evolve.
As providers of essential medical services, OCC Eyecare like all other medical facilities need to balance the immediate needs of our patients with eye-related medical conditions, with our responsibilities to protect the general public from the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
We continue to monitor the situation closely and are following the latest guidance from local, provincial and federal health authorities, including the Public Health Agency of Canada, to ensure that our practices are aligned with the latest recommendations.
Due to the unique situation of having to care for complicated and urgent eye conditions, it is necessary for OCC Eyecare to continue to still see a significant number of our patients on a regular basis to prevent blindness, in-person at our Eye Clinic. Over the last months, we have been enhancing and implementing many new policies and practices at our clinic to maximize the safety of those who must visit our clinic as many of you may be aware or have experienced during the last several weeks. We want you to be aware of what we are doing.
- We are asking patients to come into the building alone – leaving their drivers outside unless absolutely necessary or when there are communication issues. Exceptions will be made for those with a language barrier, when we need to communicate complex information and those requiring physical assistance from a caregiver.
- We have implemented new procedures in our office to minimize visit and wait times and volumes in the clinic. Please be assured that none of these new procedures will in any way compromise the usual high level and standards of eye care that OCC Eyecare will always provide to our patients.
- We have implemented a stringent pre-screening system. Anyone with symptoms of possible virus infection, and those with recent travel to high risk regions, will be asked to reschedule their appointments. We will be asking you to complete a questionnaire, observed hand cleaning, temperature screening and possibly a secondary check. We have also separated the entrance to the facility from the exit so that patients leaving the clinic do not interact with unscreened patient within the clinic.
- We are doing our best to pre-screen as many patients as possible for possible COVID-19 risk factors via telephone prior to your appointments. However, this is not always possible, and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience if you are required to reschedule your appointment once you arrive at our clinic if you fail screening. We trust that you will understand that this is for your safety as well as the safety of the other patients and staff at the clinic.
- If you fail our screening protocol, we advise you to contact your primary health care provider or the Ontario Public Health Authority at 1-866-797-0000
- All rescheduled appointments will be carefully evaluated by the OCC EyeCare eye specialist teams to ensure that they will receive appropriate eyecare in a timely manner.
- We are actively monitoring the health status of all of our doctors, medical staff and employees on a regular basis. Anyone with symptoms or risk factors for viral infection will not be working in any position that will present a risk of viral transmissions to any patients or other employees or staff.
- We have employment policies in place so that our staff are protected.
- We have increased deep cleaning of our entire clinic regularly throughout the day. This includes sanitizing surfaces and patient contact areas in all public areas and patient care areas.
- We have increased airflow and negative pressure of the HVAC system and added additional HEPA filters so transmission of air pathogens and bacteria is greatly reduced. We have upgraded the HVAC in our Visual field rooms to allow a complete air change every minute and upgraded the HVAC in our tech and exam rooms to allow for a complete air change every 3 minutes. We have also added UVC lights to our HVAC system as they have been proven to eliminate the spread of viruses.
- All of our medical personnel and administrative staff will utilize personal health protection including masks and gloves as necessary given their patient interaction roles and according to the latest recommendations from local health authorities.