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vol.76 issue7Oral health care for patients undergoing therapy for head and neck cancer in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa - A qualitative study author indexsubject indexarticles search
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South African Dental Journal

On-line version ISSN 0375-1562
Print version ISSN 0011-8516


GLUCKMAN, H; PONTES, CC; TROELZSCH, M  and  SCHEYER, ET. An overview of COVID-19 infection in dental practices - a questionnaire survey. S. Afr. dent. j. [online]. 2021, vol.76, n.7, pp.404-408. ISSN 0375-1562.

INTRODUCTION: Dental nurses and practitioners are at high risk of exposure to COVID-19 due to physical proximity and exposure to body fluids during treatment. Dental practices have implemented multiple protective protocols to decrease COVID-19 transmission; however, it is difficult to evaluate how effective these measures are, as there is limited data on COVID-19 in dental practices. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To evaluate COVID-19 infection rates among dentists, dental staff, and patients in different countries through an online survey, with a primary focus on South Africa (SA). DESIGN: Cross-sectional online survey RESULTS: One hundred fifty-four participants from 52 countries answered the survey, 48.6% (n=561) from SA. COVID-19 infections were reported in 18.2% (n=210) of dental practices. Only 1.1% regarded the practice as the source of infection for dentists and staff who got infected. In total, 13.9% (n=160) treated COVID-19 patients. SA presented a higher infection rate (19% vs 13%, p=0.04) and more frequent treatment of COVID-19 patients than the other countries combined (17% vs 11%, p=0.006). CONCLUSION: These findings support the need to maintain strict infec tion control measures to decrease transmission of SARS-CoV-2 during the delivery of oral care.

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