Important information about COVID-19: Updated November 16, 2020
Thank you for your consideration in helping us to implement important changes to our scheduling and check-in procedures these past several months to protect our patients and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. We continue to fine-tune our policies as the situation evolves and as we receive updated guidance from state and federal authorities.
Per the New Mexico Dental Association and the American Dental Association, dental offices provide essential services and should continue to be open during the shelter-at-home order. The safety of our team and our patients is our priority, and we appreciate your understanding and assistance in helping us to provide essential dental care to our patients in a safe environment.
We would like to remind all of our patients and their families regarding a few key things amid soaring cases of COVID-19 in New Mexico:
If you or anyone in your household is feeling ill, we ask that you reschedule your appointment to prevent the spread of illness wherever possible. If you have questions about what symptoms would be considered potential signs of illness, please contact Dr. Casaus by phone or email before your appointment to discuss your individual situation. Our policy is to delay non-urgent orthodontic care where there is a potential that a patient or household member is ill and/or contagious. Many urgent orthodontic problems can be fixed remotely by phone guidance using common household materials, minimizing the potential spread of illness.
If you or anyone in your household has been asked to quarantine due to illness, potential or actual exposure to a COVID-positive person, while awaiting COVID test results, or following out of state travel, please contact our office to reschedule your appointment outside the quarantine window.
The state of New Mexico has a mandatory 14-day quarantine in place following most out of state travel, and recommends quarantine following travel to lower-risk states. If you or someone in your household travels out of New Mexico, we ask that you reschedule your next appointment more than fourteen days from your return to the state, regardless of which state you have visited.
For our patients that live outside of New Mexico, a negative test exemption is no longer acceptable for entry to New Mexico. If a 14-day mandatory quarantine is not possible, please contact Dr. Casaus so that your orthodontic care may be managed remotely.
We ask that you help us minimize the number of people in our office. Only patients (and if necessary in the case of our younger patients or those needing special assistance) one accompanying adult should enter the office. Please refrain from bringing friends, siblings and other family members to your orthodontic appointments. Dr. Casaus will communicate with you via phone, text or at your vehicle regarding your child's orthodontic treatment and progress as needed. You are always encouraged to email or phone her directly with any concerns or questions you may have regarding your child's orthodontic treatment.
Remember that our brushing station is permanently closed to toothbrushing. We ask that you brush and floss your teeth thoroughly before coming to your appointment.
Routine retainer checks have been suspended in favor of a "call us if you need us" policy to reduce the number of patients in the office. If you have any concerns about your or our child's teeth alignment, bite, or retainers please call our office right away so we can schedule you an appointment.
Braces removal appointments generate dental aerosols and, as such, will only be performed on Thursday afternoons under strict high-level personal protective equipment and disinfection protocols. Only patients that are having their braces removed are permitted in the office after 2:30pm on Thursdays. Our receptionist will not be available to answer or return phone calls after that time.
Remember that our office is closed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Urgent orthodontic concerns that arise after-hours should always be directed to our emergency cell phone at 505-388-8701 (this number can also be found on our answering machine message). You must leave a voice message on the emergency cell phone with the patient's name and phone number in order for us to return your call promptly and assess your needs outside of regular business hours.
PLEASE REVIEW OUR CHECK-IN PROCEDURE:
When you arrive for your appointment, we ask that you remain in your vehicle and send a text message stating the name of the patient(s) to our office phone number (505) 508-4939 to let us know of your arrival. If you do not receive a text back from us within five minutes, please call us at (505) 508-4939 as the system occasionally becomes overloaded and delays can occur. Please note that we are unable to receive photographs to this phone number, and texts sent to this number are not monitored after-hours.
We will text you a link to our wellness screening questionnaire the morning of your appointment and again when you notify us of your arrival. We ask that one questionnaire be completed for each person that plans to enter the office. We will review your responses and call you with any follow-up questions.
Link to our Wellness Screening Form HERE
Everyone that enters our office must be wearing a face mask that covers the nose and mouth. We ask that you please bring your own cloth or disposable facemask for use in our office. You will be prompted to remove your mask for examination and treatment inside the mouth. Your mask should be worn at all other times while in the office to prevent the spread of illness. Please note that per the NM Department of Health, face shields and vented face masks are not acceptable face coverings because they do not protect persons around you from respiratory droplets from your nose and mouth. You will be given a disposable face mask or asked to remain in your vehicle if you arrive without a non-vented face mask. The only exception to this requirement is if you have a written exemption from a healthcare provider stating you cannot wear a non-vented face mask for any length of time for medical reasons.
Upon entering the office, we will provide you with hand sanitizer and take your temperature with a no-touch forehead thermometer before you are seated for your appointment. Temperatures are often elevated after sitting in a hot car, so keeping your vehicle cool will help keep your temperature in the normal range. We will also ask you to rinse with a hydrogen peroxide solution for one minute as recommended by the ADA to minimize oral viral load prior to your appointment.
We want to assure you that we have taken steps toward keeping our office a safe place for you to visit.
• We have instructed anyone on our staff feeling ill to stay at home. Our entire staff is screened for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 daily, including temperature checks.
• Our practice follows strict OSHA and CDC guidelines for sterilization, infection control and cleanliness in our office. We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new guidance that may be issued. We disinfect all common areas, bathrooms, counters, keyboards, waiting areas, clinical areas, phones, doorknobs, light switches and other high touch areas throughout the day.
• We have removed magazines from the reception area and replaced them with hand sanitizer, facial tissues and a large hands-free waste receptacle. Our waiting area has been reconfigured to promote social distancing, so you will see fewer seating options and more space between the chairs. We have adopted a virtual waiting room by asking patients to remain in their vehicles until we are ready to seat them in a private operatory for treatment. We have removed all unnecessary items from clinical areas to promote thorough disinfection.
• Patients are seated as far apart as possible and appointment times are staggered. We utilize our closed private operatories for nearly all appointments. We have modified some of our procedure protocols to minimize or avoid the production of dental aerosols. Appointment times have been lengthened to allow for thorough disinfection and to reduce patient flow and capacity. Certain procedures are grouped to minimize risk to our staff and fellow patients, with high-risk patients being offered the first appointments of the day. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility as we work to fine-tune our appointment schedule.
We look forward to seeing you and we encourage you to contact our office by phone or email with any concerns or questions you might have regarding these policies or your treatment. Thank you for your understanding, patience, and assistance in our efforts to make our office environment safe for everyone. We love to see your smiles and we are grateful for the opportunity to serve our community as healthcare providers during this difficult time.
Wishing you and your family good health,
Dr. Dana Casaus and the Team at Casaus Orthodontics
Having healthy, straight teeth and a beautiful smile will change your life. You’ll be more confident meeting and talking with people, you'll smile more, and you’ll have better oral health, too. Orthodontic care is about transforming lives, one person at a time. Dr. Dana Casaus and the Casaus Orthodontics team would love to help you develop your healthiest, best smile.
By focusing on your unique clinical and personal needs, and using leading-edge techniques, Dr. Casaus will gently move your teeth into proper alignment. Your orthodontic experience will be efficient, effective, and affordable. Best of all, your new smile is one you’ll love for a lifetime!
In addition to American-made ceramic and stainless steel braces for children, teens, and adults, Casaus Orthodontics offers Invisalign® clear aligners. Dr. Casaus is a skilled orthodontist with years of experience treating cleft lip, cleft palate and other Craniofacial Anomalies. She uses dentofacial orthopedics to treat minor jaw discrepancies in growing kids and teens, and is skilled in using Surgical Orthodontics to treat more severe jaw problems in non-growing adult patients. She also provides 24/7 Emergency Orthodontic Care for after-hours problems.
Complimentary consultations are offered at our Albuquerque, NM orthodontic office. Please contact us to learn more and schedule a visit for yourself or a loved one. Everyone at Casaus Orthodontics looks forward to welcoming you to our practice. We can’t wait to start you on the path to a lifetime of beautifully healthy smiles!