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Ryan Hamm is the former Editorial Director for Dental Products Report and Digital Esthetics.
Consider these tips for making sure you don't spread let infection spread around your team or, most importantly, to the restorations you're producing for clients and patients.
1. Keep it clean
It’s a good rule of thumb in any setting, but make sure you are always washing your hands any time there’s a chance of contamination happening, whether it’s in the lab, the kitchen, or anywhere else where a non-sterile hand could make a big difference.
2. Ask the tough questions
Keep everyone on your team on the same page and make sure you’ve ensured that no one is bringing a bug into the lab. Asking someone if they washed their hands may sound like something a third-grade teacher would ask, but it’s also a good question from a smart businessperson to ask as well.
3. Put a plan in place
Check out the latest OSHA updates at OSHA.gov, or attend an anti-infection seminar at a tradeshow. In short, educate yourself and then put a plan in place for your lab. Make sure your employees understand the purpose of an infection-prevention plan, and get it posted around the office. Emphasize that everyone who works in the office is responsible for carrying out that plan in order to keep you, your clients and, ultimately, patients safe.
4. Know the rules-and follow them
Do you really know everything you’re supposed to be doing to ensure a completely safe and sterile environment? If someone gave you a pop quiz on the subject, would you pass or fail? You might be surprised the things you’re already doing wrong, so take a few moments and make sure you’re blocking a bug before it has a chance to cause big problems. It’s easy to skip a step here or cut a corner there, but if it ends up hurting your business, was it really worth the time or cost savings?
5. Play it safe
It’s better to be too cautious than take a chance on causing an infection problem. Not feeling well? Cut your finger over the weekend? Err on the side of caution when it’s time to report for work on Monday.
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