As you know, I ceased treatments for a while, even though acupuncturists are considered 'essential'. The truth is a lot of my patients see me for cosmetic concerns, and I needed the time to explore how to move forward with this mainstay of my practice while ensuring everyone's health and safety. So after much exploration, collaboration, guidance, and investment, I'm ready to get back into treatments.
I'm through the process of preparing my space at The Road (previously Brooke Taylor Acupuncture) to welcome patients. What has changed? A better understanding of transmission and how to keep ourselves as safe as possible. I've adapted my day-to-day protocols, offering treatments in a new paradigm.
Here are the steps I'm taking to keep patients safe when coming in to receive a treatment.
1. The space has been unoccupied for two months, hence the space has been deep cleaned to begin - a clean slate.
a. Removal of all superfluous items that make things harder to clean. This includes a lot of cloth or porous items, or things that cannot be easily wiped down. We can't help ourselves - we like to touch things!
b. Removal of all retail products to avoid them being handled unless being purchased. They have also been subsequently wiped down and are now handled with gloves, including when ordered and shipped through the online store. I'll help you get what you need.
c. Door handles into the building and office are being wiped down before and after each patient. The door to the office will remain open when coming and going to ease entry/exit, and closed during your private treatment.
d. All areas where a patient has been will be wiped down with disinfectant or sprayed where appropriate. Enough time will elapse between patients so that disinfectant has time to dry and be effective according to guidelines.
e. All materials used on the table are one use and changed out for each patient (always the case!). The company responsible for laundry takes the sheets and towels to Houston where they are handled according to guidelines for sanitizing, from washing, drying, wrapping, and delivery. The table itself is then wiped down, air dried, then re-covered. Boom!
f. The space itself has a brand new air filter with HEPA to help with general allergens, but also circulates air through a UVC light to contribute to eliminating viruses in the air. One in the treatment area, one in the front.
g. Any device that is smaller and used on a patient is properly washed/dried, then sanitized and run through a separate UVC device for the appropriate amount of time. This includes probes from the microcurrent machine, glass cups, and gua sha devices. Needles are of course one use and sterile, and always have been.
h. As your practitioner, I am wearing a mask to protect you, wearing gloves during treatments, washing my hands, a LOT. My clothes have been laundered and alternated daily. They have been gone over with a UVC wand. My personal devices are wiped down on arrival at the office - laptop and phone, pens, and these spend time in the UVC cabinet as well. I've been at home on my own this entire time, and feeling fine!
i. Transactions will be via invoicing, I kindly request you pay prior to arrival for treatments or venmo, etc upon completion if not booked online. You can also request your card information be saved when you check out with me to facilitate ease of closing out. I'm also happy to invoice you for product - you can pay the invoice online and save your card then if you choose. If we must handle cards, I'll use gloves. There will be hand purifier, too.
j. I take personal responsibility to keep myself healthy, and only work if I'm feeling well, and will ask the same of you in return.
Even though this sounds highly clinical and daunting, rest assured, the zen of the space will be preserved. While I think it is a reassurance psychologically to see all of these things, it can also create a kind of stress on its own - a heightened awareness, a cue there's a threat 'out there'. So my bottles will be stored, and time will be allowed for any disinfectants to evaporate and dry - I don't want you inhaling these anyway. You will still be made completely comfortable and should not overtly notice a shift in the way you are treated. I will wear gloves and mask, but believe it or not, if you weren't observing this, you'd probably be hard pressed to tell the difference.
Here are the perimeters for you as the patient to receive treatments.
1. You agree not to come in to my space if you have symptoms of being ill.
a. Fever - DO NOT keep your appointment if you have a fever, anything over 100.4.. If you arrive with a fever, you will not receive a treatment. Do try to give me proper notice for a cancellation, but if in doubt, call me and cancel. Many doctors are allowing calls to help you determine if you have a common cold or if there's something to be concerned about.
b. Cough or cold symptoms. Call me if you've been diagnosed with a condition.
c. Stomach disruption including diarrhea. Call me for herbs if you'd like, I can have them drop shipped to you.
d. Other symptoms not part of your normal health concerns, including a skin rash.
2.If you have allergy symptoms, please let me know ahead of time. We have herbs for allergies - I get it - I have them, and sneeze occasionally when not taking my herbs regularly. Nothing like the stink eye for sneezing!
3. You agree to wear a mask. If there is a portion of the treatment that requires removal of your mask, we will temporarily remove the mask and replace it accordingly. Please wear your mask from your car onward, and on exiting.
4. You agree to respect the space and surrounds. A big part of keeping the space safe includes just exterior to my space and the bathrooms. There are immunocompromised folks throughout the building, and we're doing all we can to ensure they are secure in getting treatments at the building. Stick to social distancing when in the building. Overall, we're working to make it where you do not have to make decisions about social distancing.
5. If you're early for your appointment - text me before heading in to maintain social distancing with someone who might be exiting.
Questions? Please give me a call, I'm happy to answer to the best of my ability. 512-956-9980.
I am so looking forward to returning to our journey of health and wellness!