Hard At Work

Author: Dr. David Dickerhoff, DDS, MAGD, FOCOI

If you will be kind enough to let me vent some of my frustration in this blog, I would appreciate it. This pandemic that roared its head in the early months of 2020 needs to be brought under control as soon as possible.  My optimism is based on knowing that many scientific minds and industries are hard at work trying to find ways to test for its presence, develop a vaccine and nail down its epidemiology. Seeing our children at bus stops in the morning as I drive to work without masks and not practicing social distancing makes no sense to me. Seeing presidential rallies at out local airport without these measures as well makes me fear for potential outbreak in our community in the upcoming weeks. As we practice these measures in our office as well as many other mitigating efforts, it helps us to reassure our patients that they can seek elective dental care, even during this pandemic.  The American Dental Association has yet to report any linked exposure to the Covid virus and receiving dental care utilizing contact tracing.

I recently visited a webinar sponsored by the Seattle Study Club where Dr. Leslie Fang, a Harvard professor and physician, told of a breakthrough by Abbott Laboratories, where they brought to the marketplace a test for Covid.  This test will allow anyone to get a positive or negative test for Covid within fifteen minutes by utilizing this ‘swab and analyze’ kit.  The government has purchased the initial production of this test so it is not available to the general public yet.  Their plan is to provide it to first responders and at-risk populations, but my hope is that it will be available to my practice in the very near future.  The kit costs $200.00 and has the capability of testing 40 individuals.  But by identifying asymptomatic individuals and getting them appropriately into treatment and/or quarantine, this will be a huge step in better managing this pandemic.  We are on this list to receive these tests once they become available.  Abbott Laboratories will be receiving a windfall because of this development, but hey, this is America.  You go, girl.

In the meantime, please take seriously our responsibility to social distance and wear masks.  Three coaches in the NFL were just fined 100$K for not wearing masks.  That should send the signal to all of us to step up to our personal responsibility to watch out for each other.  Stay safe out there!