Re-Opening Patient Journey following COVID 19 Guidelines

Written on 06/27/2020
Danica Payne

We are opening Tuesday 7th July 2020.

Finally after 106 days in total, we have had confirmation we are able to open! We are planning to open from 7th July & are currently implementing all the necessary protocols & changes to keep all our patients & staff safe. Although we're delighted to be opening, this is far from business as usual & we have to meet a strict criteria to ensure we meet Government guidelines. We are working to best practice guidance provided by Save Face (an aesthetics regulatory body), Government guildlines & our insurance providers.  Only aesthetic treatments by Corinne, Jonny & myself will be taking place. No beauty, laser or microblading will be taking place as per Government guidelines at this time.

How can we open? I have managed dental practices since 2014 & always do everything by the book, to the highest standard  & am completely transparent so patients can make the right decision for them. I initially announced I was not choosing to open as the aesthetic industry was too much of a grey area & no one was able to give me any clarification. It was then the following day, I received confirmation via 3 bodies, I was compliant to open & I was happy to proceed. It has taken me a long time to build the business to where it is now &  to create a reputation I value so highly, I would not jeopardise my staff, patients or business if I did not have clarity & evidence we were safe to open. I could actually argue we're more safe than a hairdressers to open, which as we all know, has been given the ok in the recent Government announcements.

 The confusion comes when the Government announced hair dressers could open but beauty salons could not. I would like to clarify we do not class ourselves as a beauty salon. I have no beauty qualifications, Corinne & I have a GDC registration, & Jonny GMC, which are the General Dental or Medical Council, therefore we are healthcare professionals, not beauticians.  The Medispa premises has a D1 lease which is for healthcare services, not for beauty salons, supported by healthcare professional services being removed from the Governments services to remain closed on 1st June 2020. Our beauty floor will be closed indefinitely until given the go ahead by the Government, however the vast majority of services in the clinic is cosmetic aesthetic injectables. We have been advised by Save Face, Southampton City Council & our insurance providers we may open as long as we can meet the criteria issued to us by these 3 bodies. Some of our patients have been waiting since March this year so these will be prioritised over new bookings when arranging appointments. Those who are impacted negatively by the lack of having their treatment in their daily lifestyle, or whose mental states are compromised by no treatment  will also be prioritised. 

It is important to understand Jonny, Corinne & I have over 60 years medical experience between us. Maintaining high levels of cross infection is standard. All items we use on patients are single use. I personally have completed annual cross infection training for 9 years. The knowledge we have on maintaining a clean and sterile working environment to the level the Government is requesting, has been the norm for us for many years! The clinic is cleaned daily to a medical grade standard & we have allowed 15 minutes between patients to allow for even more thorough disinfection between patients.

We stand by & can provide evidence your visit to us is lower risk than that at a hairdressers & the patients we are treating benefit out ways their risk of treatment. This being said, we will be hand picking those who will be seen depending on their COVID risk, treatment etc. We have mitigated the risk & the only time the 1m plus rule will be breached is when we are actually injecting. Those who have been to us previously are aware we inject from behind which is known as back to back working. Hairdressers were deemed safe as they generally cut from behind the client, nail technicians were not as they work in front of the client. Our clinic is over 2000sq ft meaning although it is unlikely multiple patients will be in the waiting area at one time, you can sit more than 2m apart quite easily.

We still will offer our 5 star service, but your patient journey may be a little different. If you have an appointment in the next 3 months please read below.

1. Your consent forms will be sent prior to your appointment electronically, please complete them PRIOR to your appointment to reduce the time you are in the clinic & the surfaces you touch when you attend. Don't worry if you haven't received them yet, you will get them soon.

2. Please attend alone, this includes children. We need to keep patient numbers in the clinic to a minimum & the criteria specifically states to attend alone. Please only bring minimal belongings with you. Shopping etc should be left in your car and not enter the clinic.

3. Hand hygiene. When you arrive you will be asked to hand sanitise with our hand gel, we have 7 touch less points over the clinic.

4. Your temperature will be taken & you will be given a mask if we're not treating the lower face.

5. We have 15 minutes between appointments to stagger how many people are in the Medispa at one time, you will most likely not need to wait in the waiting room, but will be taken straight through to treatment. If you do need to sit & wait however the chairs are, at least, 2 metres apart. Please accept our apologies if you have to wait a little longer, due to the 15 minute slots between patients we are losing 2-3 hours a day so not all appointments can take place as planned. The wait list should start to reduce soon as we are now able to start treating. Please do not attempt to move your appointment yourself and we are unable to book any new appointments before September. Please feel free to book in for September or further via calling or emailing reception.

5. Staff start times will be staggered & your appointment may be changed to avoid date this or our 15 gaps between patients. We appreciate your patience and will confirm your appointment via email in the next few weeks. If you are booked in for multiple treatments we may need to separate your appointments.

6. The maximum allowance for an appointment is 1 hour, some packages exceed this so will be separated into smaller appointments, all of which will be clarified in your emails. All deposits and discounts will be held.

7. Track & Trace. Although we have migrated the risk as much as practically possible, it is important you are aware we cannot guarantee no corona virus in the clinic which is why the Government implemented the track and trace app. We are not expecting patients to download this app, but due to using medical software have details of every patient, when they attended, for how long etc so could make people aware if ever necessary.

8. PPE Although we always wear single use PPE, we have put additional measures in place. You may be given a mask to wear if your treatment allows. We are also wearing an N95 mask, apron and visor to create a plastic barrier between ourselves and the patient. 

9. Medimist. A medical grade machine that you may see in our waiting or reception area. It produces a mist that is free from harsh chemicals, the solution is non-toxic & non-hazardous, which is safe for the environment. It kills all bacteria in the air, including COVID 19, and disinfects all the surfaces it lands on in only a few seconds. EU regulated and recognised, it is proven to kil 99.95% of bacteria.

10. Back to back working. The most crucial part! Due to the spread of COVID 19 being significantly reduced when being behind the patient, we will only being completing treatments we can inject from behind. Some treatments  such as chin filler for example, may not be able to take place. We appreciate your patients and will confirm with everyone who has an appointment looked between now and Christmas what treatment we are competing, the day and time. 

Thank you all so much for your patients and support. We have had such nice comments since announcing reopening. We have moved over 1200 patients during lockdown & have not received one complaint. I can't wait to see you all soon. Stay safe.