Dental appointments might be canceled in Canada due to shortage of masks
Brush your teeth well, because dentists in Canada are now warning that appointments could be cancelled due to a country-wide shortage of masks.
Dentists, dental assistants and dental hygienists are required to wear a new, disposable mask for each patient they deal with.
And while Canada recommends against the general public wearing masks to guard against COVID-19, for dental hygienists, masks are essential to protect against spray from patients' mouths.
Coronavirus update re: mask shortage: using the appropriate level of PPE based on risk level for various tasks may help to mitigate any supply concerns. Contact manufacturers for product advice.— CDHA (@theCDHA) February 21, 2020
Government officials have assured that the supply issue is being addressed. pic.twitter.com/XrBUxwvESl
Andrea Burton, executive director of the B.C. Dental Hygienists Association, said "dental hygienists cannot practice without a proper mask."
"[They're] really worried they're going to be looking at unemployment insurance, because they are not going to be able to work if they can't get the [masks]."
The fact that healthcare providers are literally running into mask shortages (due to public trying to protect from coronavirus) is terrifying. No way I'm about to work on a patient in dental without a mask ..... 😷😳😱— katie (@kebraden7) March 5, 2020
Masks have been selling out across Canada, with big pharmacies like Rexall and Shoppers Drug Mart reporting an exponential increase in mask sales. A Toronto hardware store reported selling 1000 masks in one week — 980 more than they would usually sell.
Canadian Tire was even caught selling fake N95 masks for an exorbitant $20 for 10 masks.
With the number of coronavirus cases in Canada rising to 79, it's understandable that many Canadians are panicking.
Still, the best way to prevent coronavirus is by washing your hands for at least 20 seconds, not touching your face, and cleaning your phone, television remote and door handles with bleach — no medical-grade masks required.
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