Dear Helm Ortho Patient Family,

It’s been a historic and unique week for us all. The American Dental Association and American Association of Orthodontists have made recommendations in response to CDC and Federal Coronavirus Task Force recommendations to limit dental/orthodontic care to emergency-only procedures. On Thursday, March 19, Governor Polis signed an executive order, temporarily suspending elective dental/orthodontic procedures until at least April 14, 2020. The purpose of this executive order is to conserve the use of personal protective equipment (masks, gloves, etc.) that is needed to combat COVID-19, as well as to slow the spread (“flatten the curve”) of COVID-19 to avoid exceeding our health care system’s capacity.

As a result of these recommendations and executive order, our office will be temporarily closed to routine patient care until we are given clearance to resume. We will be limiting appointments to orthodontic emergencies only (acute issues involving pain, infection and trauma). Expect limited office phone coverage and regular checking of phone messages during this time. Of course, Dr. Helm will be available to address emergencies in the office and other concerns via telehealth appointments. To help determine the urgency of a visit, ask yourself if you can wait two to three weeks for an appointment.

The timeline for this operational structure is unknown and remains very fluid. We will be contacting all patients who have an appointment already scheduled during this time to confirm they have received notification of the need to postpone their appointment (please check your voicemail if you haven’t). Dr. Helm will review each patient’s chart and we will call you if he feels you need to be seen for a limited appointment. We will not be rescheduling appointments until we have more information on when we will be cleared to resume patient care. We will keep you updated as we know more. Over the next week, we will be developing the ability to complete some new patient consultations as well as growth and development checks via virtual consultation if you are interested in this option.

Even though some appointments will need to be postponed during this time, you can help keep your treatment on track by avoiding hard and sticky foods and keeping your teeth clean during this time. Without repair appointments available, breaking a bracket could set your treatment back, and keeping your teeth clean will ensure the best possible result.

When we re-open, plan to see some best practices in place that will allow us to comply with recommendations for practicing social distancing, limit waiting room traffic, pre-screening for symptoms and exposure, as well as others that we will keep you informed about as they are implemented.

Please know that we are committed to providing the best possible care while following all recommendations released by the CDC, the state of Colorado, ADA, and AAO. We will do ALL we can to take care of you. If we can be of any help, please don’t hesitate to call our office at (303) 371-0371 or email us at [email protected]

Wishing you all health and strength as we get through this together. We appreciate your understanding as we all do our part to “flatten” the curve.

Sincerely,

Dr. Helm