COVID 19 Safety Plan Staff Manual
At Chilliwack Sports Medicine Clinic we are committed to providing a safe environment for our clients and staff. As such, the following is a list of measures we have taken to ensure we are doing our absolute best to limit the transmission of diseases, in particular SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).
- Increased cleaning protocol: we have always prided ourselves on having a meticulously clean and sanitary facility, but even so, we have increased our cleaning protocol. We have laid out a rigid cleaning schedule in to “per use”, “twice per hour”, “hourly”, “per shift”, and “daily” cleaning categories. Please note that if you use any of the common office equipment ie: fridge, coffee maker, etc you are responsible for wiping it down thoroughly after each use. Our intention is to make sure any potential surface for transmission of disease is sanitized at any point at which transmission could occur. All products used for sanitization are approved by Health Canada.
- Reduction of people in the clinic at one time: we have staggered start times as best we can to minimize close gathering of staff and clients. In addition, we have extended some appointment length times from 30 and 45 minute slots to 60 minute slots. This will help control the number of people inside the clinic, and afford more time to complete the increased cleaning measures we’ve laid out.
- Elimination of a waiting room: we are asking clients to stay in their car and only enter the clinic 2 minutes prior to their appointment time. Once a room is sanitized and ready, clients will then be directed by the front desk staff and asked to go directly in to their assigned room.
- Patient Screening: It will be the responsibility of the treatment staff to act as our primary screens for patients by ensuring that the COVID Screening Survey, sent no sooner than 18 hours prior to each appointment, is complete. If no screening is complete prior to the appointment, the treatment staff are to notify the administrative staff in order to place a phone call to the patient urging them to complete the online screening. If online screening is not possible, then a phone call will be made to the patient prior to their upcoming appointment. We will ensure that they have a mask to wear while in the clinic. If they do not have a mask to wear, one of our disposable masks will be available for them for a $2.00 charge, or one of our washable masks free of charge (to be placed into the soiled linen bin upon exiting the office).
- Personal protective equipment (PPE): All staff are to abide by the policies of their respective governing colleges with respect to the level of PPE required during specific treatment types.
- Masks: both clients and staff are required to wear masks at all times within the clinic. Please refer to the attached information on correct donning and doffing of masks. We ask that you do not remove your masks if possible throughout your shift. You must then use a new mask for the duration of your shift.
- Clothing: Please consider having a set of work clothes that you change in to at the clinic and out of before you go home. Clothes should be placed in a bag and laundered immediately upon returning home after every shift.
- Showering: it is current best practice to shower immediately upon returning home from your shift.
- Hand sanitizing: we have hand sanitizer available at the front desk, on the concrete pillar next to the front desk, in each physiotherapy room, and at the back of the exercise room. All clients must use the sanitizers upon entering and exiting the clinic. Handwashing has proven to be the most effective line of defense against the spread of COVID-19 therefore we are asking staff to be diligent with handwashing. Please wash your before entering a room, after exiting a room, after touching any patient or staff member, before and after touching your face, and any other time throughout the day you have touched something that is a shared surface. Proper handwashing protocol states that hands should be washed with soap and warm water for a minimum of 40 seconds. Gloves are available for hand protection as well. If you do use gloves please wash your hands before placing gloves on and after taking gloves off. Gloves need to be changed between each client and disposed of after each use. We are encouraging clients to use hand sanitizer over hand washing in our facility to limit the amount of contact on soap dispenser, sink handles, etc.
- Linens and laundry: when handling any used laundry please either wash hands immediately following contact or wear gloves and dispose of them immediately after contact.
- Laundry: we have eliminated the use of the communal laundry hamper at this time. Any linens that are used should be placed directly into the laundry hamper in each room. The dirty linens are then placed directly into the washing machine. The therapist is to notify the front desk that the wash machine has been loaded. This is to limit the amount of times contaminated articles are being handled. Please let the front staff know if the washing machine is getting full.
- Linens: we have eliminated the use of fabric pillowcases and replaced them with easy to wipe down vinyl pillows.
- Towels and washcloths: any towels that get used on a patient are to be placed in the laundry hamper immediately.
- Social distancing: we are asking clients and staff to remain aware of social distancing protocol in common areas throughout the clinic. This means leaving 6 feet between yourself and another individual. The exception to this would be between therapists and clients during treatment within the private treatment rooms/space. We have also installed sneeze guards at the front desk counter to keep our administrative staff safe. Please be particularly mindful of social distancing in common areas such as behind the front desk, in the staff room, around the sink, at the cupboards with IMS and needling supplies, and in the gym. We would also ask that there be no hugging or hand shaking between any persons at this time. Additionally, we have asked clients to attend their appointments alone whenever possible.
- Limiting the sharing of equipment and tools: it is forefront in our minds that the more people that touch the same object, the higher the potential for disease spread. To address this we will be assigning high traffic objects to a designated user whenever possible.
- Rooms: Each therapist will be assigned one room. They are not to use any room other than the one assigned to them. Each room will be required to be disinfected between each patient and again before the next shift of therapists starts. Furthermore, we ask that therapists use empty rooms or space to do their charting as opposed to sitting in the staff room.
- Equipment: please do not transfer any equipment within a room to a different room. Examples would be reflex hammers, shoe horns, massage oil, etc.
- Modalities: each therapist will be assigned their own Ultrasound and IFC machine. Please only use the machine you are assigned. Physiotherapists will be responsible to clean their machines after each patient use.
- Lumbar traction: if lumbar traction is required for a patient please have them put on a treatment gown. Please ensure that no part of the chest harness or waist strap is touching any part of the clients clothing or skin. Once the treatment is finished please place the gown directly in the laundry hamper.
- Needling supplies: each Physiotherapist will be assigned their own needling tray. Please only use the tray you are assigned. Physiotherapists will be responsible to clean their trays after each patient use.
- Gym: at this time the equipment in the gym will remain closed for unsupervised client use. If you need to demonstrate an exercise in the gym please make sure there is no one else within 6 feet and then you will be responsible for sanitizing anything that has been touched.
- Front Desk Phone/Electronic use: front desk staff will be asked to disinfect the phone, keyboard, mouse, and scanner that was used throughout their shift. Each front desk staff will be provided with their own tray to store items such as pens and highlighters.
- Respiratory etiquette: we are asking clients and staff to remain mindful of safe coughing and sneezing protocol. This means if one needs to cough or sneeze the inside of the elbow should be used to cover the nose and mouth and hands should be sanitized or washed immediately following.
- Signs of sickness: we are asking that if staff or clients have any cold or flu-like symptoms to stay home and not come to the clinic. We have waived all charges for appointment cancellations due to sickness at this time. Should any signs of sickness appear to be a possible COVID reaction, appropriate testing and self-isolation will be undertaken, after which time, medical clearance from a Medical Doctor may be required prior to returning to the clinic.
- Staff Monitoring: Each employee and therapist are required to perform a self-assessment prior to arriving at the clinic for their shift, including a temperature check. Prior to leaving the clinic, a second temperature check will be performed.
We thank you for your understanding and willingness to do your part. We realize that this may sound overwhelming but please stay calm and understanding as we safely try to navigate this very uncertain time. We would like to encourage you that this is not forever, it is just for now.