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Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Healthcare Professionals and Oral Care Operational Services: A Systemic Review

Authors Bordea IR, Candrea S, Sălăgean T, Pop ID, Lucaciu O, Ilea A, Manole M, Băbțan AM, Sirbu A, Hanna R

Received 29 September 2020

Accepted for publication 3 December 2020

Published 4 February 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 453—463


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Marco Carotenuto

Ioana Roxana Bordea,1,* Sebastian Candrea,2,* Tudor Sălăgean,3 Ioana Delia Pop,3 Ondine Lucaciu,1 Aranka Ilea,1 Marius Manole,4 Anida-Maria Băbțan,1 Adina Sirbu,1 Reem Hanna5,6

1Department of Oral Rehabilitation, “Iuliu Hațieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy Cluj-Napoca, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 2Department of Pedodontics, County Hospital Cluj-Napoca, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 3Department of Land Measurements and Exact Sciences, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Cluj-Napoca, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 4Department of Dental Propaedeutics and Esthetics, Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj Napoca, Romania; 5Department of Surgical Sciences and Integrated Diagnostics, Laser Therapy Centre, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy; 6Department of Oral Surgery, Dental Institute, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Denmark Hill, London, UK

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence: Tudor Sălăgean Tel +40744707371

Abstract: The unprecedented climate of the COVID-19 pandemic has some restrictions on oral care operational services, which heavily impacted the delivery of aerosol generating procedures (AGPs). This led the health authorities to set up guidelines and policies that should be followed to minimize the virus spread and ensure safe and effective dental care delivery. This systemic review aimed to evaluate the current guidelines and strategies in providing safe dental services and ensuring efficacy of the current universal personal preventive and protective measures, as well the impact that this outbreak might have on practicing the dental profession in full scope. The review focus questions were as follows: are the current guidelines and measures in literature mitigated enough to ensure safe and effective oral care delivery to patients during the COVID-19 pandemic? Is it possible to highlight the essential and fundamental cross-infection control measures and policies? Twenty articles were chosen out of 180,248 after the inclusion and exclusion criteria were applied in the period between January 1st and August 1st 2020. Our results highlighted effective safety measures that can be implanted in protecting healthcare professionals and patients and ensuring optimal dental care delivery in a safe and healthy environment, taking into consideration the risk assessment and management of AGPs. In conclusion, informative updated standardized policies and protocols are required when more knowledge on the virus behavior keeps evolving. Moreover, there is a need for evidence-based protective measures to be modified on a regular basis to be followed, until a safe vaccine is produced.

Keywords: COVID-19, risk assessment, cross-infection control, diagnostic tests, dental care emergency guidelines, disinfectants, public health, aerosol generating procedures, airborne, healthcare personnel protection

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