Construction is well underway at a new satellite clinic for the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Dentistry.
The 15,000-square foot clinic is scheduled to open in early September and will be located at 777 Bay Street – just steps from the main dentistry building on Edward Street.
Featuring 41 enclosed operatories, the new facility will enhance the patient experience and enrich clinical education.
“At 777 Bay we expect to do mainly aerosol-generating procedures, such as more complex endodontics and restorative work,” says James Posluns, the faculty’s director of clinical affairs.
Dentistry patients will likely find themselves visiting both locations. That might mean having assessments on Edward Street, as well as some treatment – with a visit to the new clinic at some point in their treatment plan.
Posluns says staff and students will work hard to clearly communicate with patients and make sure they know where they’re supposed to be.
While the new clinic has some sterilization equipment, the majority of it will be located at 124 Edward Street, where a new medical device reprocessing facility will be operational in the fall. Staff, including Cliff McHugh, who just joined the Faculty of Dentistry as manager of this new facility, are creating a plan to efficiently move instruments between the two facilities.
Posluns says students will be particularly keen to see patients at the new location.
“Over at 777, it’s a brand new clinic. It’ll be efficient and attractive. We are all excited to get in there and get to work.”
Danielle Churchill, manager of building operations and services for the faculty, agrees.
“There’s plenty of glass and everything looks very modern.” she says. “It’s very clean looking and bright. It will be a place that provides wonderful patient comfort while providing the students with a facility that looks in keeping with what they’ll experience in practice.”
Another benefit of the new satellite clinic is that the location will operate as a swing space when Clinic 2 and the stimulation lab undergo renovations in the coming years.
Churchill says she sees the space as serving as a testing ground to see which design aspects work best. “It’s like a miniature big clinic – a testing bed for anything that’s new and that’s going to come along at the Faculty site.”
While construction during the pandemic has been a challenge for many projects, Churchill says work on the clinic has, so far, been moving along without a hitch.
“There are so many unknowns in construction generally, but this year has been particularly interesting,” she says noting the supply issues faced by many builders.
Churchill says dental equipment will be installed at the facility in mid-August, with the clinic set to open in time for student rotations in the early fall.