Dentists in New Mexico may resume non-essential dental care, officials say

Las Cruces News

Nexstar file photo

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KTSM) – New Mexico dentists in all but three counties may resume providing non-essential dental care, state health officials announced.

Health officials said this is provided they agree to comply with guidelines developed to protect the supply of personal protective equipment.

The Phase I Reopening Guidelines for dentists were developed by the New Mexico Medical Advisory Team in collaboration with the New Mexico Dental Association. They include a personal protective equipment burn rate calculator dental providers can use to determine how quickly they are using up personal protective equipment like masks, face shields, gloves, and gowns.

San Juan, McKinley, and Cibola counties are exempt as they continue fighting a surge of COVID-19 cases.

Officials said the guidelines were developed to ration and preserve the state’s supply of personal protective equipment in response to the public health emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced on April 30 a public health order to protect New Mexico’s supply of personal protective equipment healthcare workers needs to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is the responsibility of each individual provider to use professional discretion and judgment in evaluating which health care services can be delayed and which should be provided, taking into consideration the best interests of the patient, officials said.

Dental providers must submit the required form attesting they will comply with the guidelines. They can download the required form and submit it online at cv.nmhealth.org under the clinician information link.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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