On July 7, 2020, Dr. David Williams, the Chief Medical Officer of Health, sent a memo to the oral health regulators about aerosol-generating dental procedures (AGDPs). Dr. Williams acknowledges that dental settings have unique characteristics that warrant specific infection control considerations. He further acknowledges that there is insufficient evidence to definitively assess the risk of conducting AGDPs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr. Williams suggests the use of the precautionary principle for infection prevention and control. Under this advice and due to the uncertainty about the transmission of COVID-19, we are recommending that when there is an option for protective measures, members should take the highest level of precaution, especially for aerosol-generating procedures.
Members who work with other professions should also be mindful of the guidance provided by those Colleges and the application of the precautionary principle. The highest level of precautions in a time of uncertainty is important to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and to protect the health and safety of members, staff, patients and the public.