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New guidelines at the dentist could cost patients

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Governor Cuomo said yesterday that all dentist offices can begin reopening today, subject to state guidelines on safety and social distancing largely based on the latest advice from the American Dental Association.

While necessary, some of these new protocols could prove to be costly for both providers and their patients.

Likely to be required: Screening patients for COVID-19; having patients wait outside instead of in a waiting room, requiring office staff to wear more PPE than usual; and doing more cleaning in-between patients.

Coupled with the fact that dentist visits are way down because of the pandemic, early reports suggest some offices may choose to tack on fees of about $10 per visit to cover their increased costs.

Residents should inquire with their dentist about these fees prior to their visit in order to avoid any surprises.

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