March 20th, 2020

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COVID-19 & Your Team: Curbside Services Protocols

We know that caring for the health and well-being of pet patients is challenging at this time, and many practices are opting for curbside/drop-off exams and services to keep physical human interaction, clinic access and viral exposure to a minimum.

When offering curbside services, the following procedures can help limit your employees’ exposure and keep clients and their pets safe:

  • Instruct clients to call the hospital when they arrive to alert staff they are in the parking lot.
  • While on the phone, have a technician get a brief history before sending the vet/technician out to the vehicle and waiting for the pet.
  • Doctors and staff should consider wearing protective gloves, masks and/or gowns as pet fur can potentially harbor the coronavirus from infected clients.
  • If the pet needs an initial examination in the vehicle, try to keep as much personal distance as possible between yourself and the client and any other persons in the vehicle.
  • Except when an animal is non-ambulatory or must be examined in the vehicle, staff members should come to the car and swiftly transport the pet inside the practice while the client remains outside.
  • Use a designated exam room—possibly the one closest to the door—that can be thoroughly cleaned after each use.
  • The veterinarian can discuss any findings, diagnosis, and treatment with the pet owner by phone or video app, such as Facetime.
  • Once the exam and/or treatment is complete, all used protective gloves, masks, and gowns should be thrown away outside the clinic. The doctor/team members involved in the appointment should immediately and thoroughly wash their hands with soap and water.
  • Payments should be done over the phone and/or electronically whenever possible.

To limit the need for clients to enter your hospital, you should also consider curbside pick-ups of medications and food.

We have prepared the following content and communication tools for your use to alert your clients to the changes: