Westfund sets high standard at Mackay Dental Care Centre


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Member-owned Health Fund, Westfund, which provides dental and eye care services to members in regional NSW and Queensland, has opened an impressive state-of-the-art dental clinic at Mackay.
The new six-chair clinic, equipped with the latest dental units and technology, is the culmination of Westfund’s efforts to bring quality, affordable healthcare to Australians in regional areas.

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Westfund sets high standard at Mackay Dental Care Centre

  1. 1. 202 Australasian Dental Practice May/June 2013 M ember-owned Health Fund, West- fund, which provides dental and eye care services to members in regional NSW and Queensland, has opened an impressive state-of-the-art dental clinic at Mackay. The new six-chair clinic, equipped with the latest dental units and technology, is the culmination of Westfund’s efforts to bring quality, affordable healthcare to Australians in regional areas. According to Managing Director, Gra- hame Danaher, Queensland has become a focus for growth for Westfund. The organisation already has a health fund office at Moranbah and eye care centres in Mackay and Rockhampton. The city of Mackay was deemed an ideal location for the new dental clinic, as it is an important service centre for Central Queensland’s booming mining industry, which has brought with it demands for improved access to dental care for West- fund’s members in the region. Westfund’s Chief Dental Officer, Dr Herdeza Verzosa, said the new Mackay Dental Care Centre provided the oppor- tunity to fill gaps in health services in the communities Westfund serves. West- fund has a heritage dating back to 1929 as a cooperative formed to bring medical care to miners in the NSW Central West town of Lithgow by funding the salary of local doctors. At the very outset, Westfund wanted to provide a superior standard of dental care with the very best in equipment and experienced clinical staff at the landmark Mackay facility. The clinic employs both locally trained and overseas-qualified den- tists, reflecting the wider trend of needing to recruit overseas-qualified dentists to fill vacancies in both public and private prac- tice in Central and Northern Queensland. The build was project-managed by AEG director, Rebecca Wood, who took on the challenge of taking over from another company to help oversee changes involving a complete re-design of the front of house area. AEG engaged Elite to conduct the fit-out of the building and designer Mark McKibbin to redesign the front areas. AEG also had to arrange the engi- neering re-design of a disabled hydraulic lift to provide wheelchair access without obstructing the footpath or reception area of the building. A small vertical lift plat- form provided the answer while leaving room for a conventional staircase. surgery | DESIGN Westfund sets high standard at Mackay Dental Care Centre By David Petrikas
  2. 2. May/June 2013 Australasian Dental Practice 203 Dr Verzosa oversaw the choice of equipment, which was based on Westfund’s previous experience with A-dec delivery units. The decision was further informed by a visit to A-dec’s manufac- turing facility and showroom in Newberg, Oregon, USA, which amply demonstrated the versatility and suitability of A-dec’s Preference cabinetry whole-of-surgery solutions. “Our original plan was for only four surgeries, based on the floor space we had available,” Dr Verzosa said. “We then went to A-dec in America and saw the A-dec cabinetry, the design of which allowed us to add two more surgeries in the same space. The double-sided A-dec central divider cabinet also allowed us to share X-ray equipment between surgeries, with only three X-ray units needed to service all six surgeries.” The aim was to set up the practice for four-handed dentistry and the “12 o’clock” work position for the dental nurse lent itself ideally to that concept. It also meant the nurse is able to get up and leave the surgery quickly if needed without going around the patient. Each surgery comprises A-dec Preference pass-though rear cabinetry and lead-lined Preference central divider units that are purpose-built by A-dec to house an extending X-ray arm which can be extended to either of the two adjacent surgeries. Dr Verzosa explained that the surgery layout was compliant with Work Health and Safety procedures and infection control protocols based on the advice of infection control consultant, Lin Lochead. With the A-dec 12 o’clock rear cabinets, dental assistants do not have to travel throughout the surgery with dirty instruments, but can store them out of the way in a tray in the rear cabinetry where the steri nurse collects them without interrupting treatment.
  3. 3. 204 Australasian Dental Practice May/June 2013 The centrally located sterilization area is divided into two sepa- rate rooms for contaminated instrument processing on one side and instrument sterilization and storage in the room next door. A pass-through window links the two areas. After deciding on the clinical requirements, Dr Verzosa sought inspiration from Australasian Dental Practice magazine and from a surgery design DVD supplied by A-dec to come up with a design direction for the new facility. She chose the colours, fin- ishes, fabrics, murals, pendant lighting and even the door handles and then communicated her brief to AEG to bring it all together. “Rebecca Wood from AEG did a good job of keeping the pro- ject progressing and on schedule and making sure the builders and the hydraulics engineer met the necessary requirements,” Dr Verzosa said.
  4. 4. 206 Australasian Dental Practice May/June 2013 The centrepiece of the clinical areas is a stunning full-length wall mural at the foot of each surgery and the use of different A-dec colour schemes to give each surgery its own personality linking with the murals. “I’ve often read these magazines and thought how nice it would be to be reading about our own dental surgery in one of them,” Dr Verzosa commented. Five of the surgeries have A-dec 500 chairs with cabinet-mounted side-delivery systems, with an A-dec 300 ‘Radius’ style delivery installed in the sixth surgery to cater for left-handed dentists. Each surgery includes the latest A-dec “operating theatre” style LED light, which reduces eyestrain by minimising shadows and also fea- tures a “cure safe” mode for working with light-cured composites. “We have A-dec 500 chairs in our NSW dental centre and through this experience, we already know A-dec to be high quality and very reliable. We need reliability in our dental facilities as being a regional provider, we’re located far from the city. The nearest A-dec equipment dealer is over four hours away in Townsville, so we need to know our dental equipment will not let us down.” ThesameemphasisappliestotheA-deccabinetry,whichincludes built-in end sinks, computer cabinets, integrated cabling and ser- vices, articulating assistant’s work surface, dedicated shelving to fit common tub and cassette systems, pass-through rear-load shelving and an efficient surgery design layout which aids work- flow by providing separate entry and access for patients and staff. Dr Verzosa said she learned the hard way that it’s best not to cut corners in surgery fit-outs. “One of our earlier practices had ‘custom-built’ dental cabinets, which turned out to be ordinary kitchen cabinetry. We have to constantly replace door handles because they come out of the doors and the inbuilt glove holder with an oval opening doesn’t fit a box of gloves without crushing it.” In contrast, Dr Verzosa said the A-dec cabinetry at Mackay looked great and worked perfectly. In addition, A-dec’s Territory Manager, James Rosborough trained Westfund’s dental staff on the proper operation all of the new A-dec equipment. A-dec’s Townsville-based dealer, Medical & Dental Solutions North Queensland (MDSNQ), now has a technician based in Mackay to service the equipment when required. “We’ve had some really great feedback from staff, patients and even the builders who said the A-dec equipment was very impres- sive,” Dr Verzosa said. “Looking at how it’s all come together, I’m very proud of it and the fact that Westfund has invested in the latest technology for the benefit of our members to give them access to high quality dental care far away from the capital cities.” Summary The Practice The Practice Westfund Dental Centre Type of Practice General Location Mackay, Queensland Size 366 square metres No of chairs 6 The Team Concept Design Dr Herdeza Verzosa Design/Engineering CEADS, McKibbin Design and AEG Construction Elite Fitout Solutions Project Managers Rebecca Wood (AEG); Will Robb (Elite) Installer Medical, Dental Solutions North Queensland (MDSNQ); MOB Enterprises (sterilisation); Westfund IT Department Equipment Units A-dec 500 542 (wall-mount delivery) A-dec 300 on 500 A-dec 545 Assistant’s instruments Sterilisation Melag Vacuklav 44B+ with Melasoft Barcode Label Printer and Melatherm thermal disinfector X-Ray Acteon X-Mind x-ray units with Sorodex Digora Optime PSP scanner Suction Tandem Cattani Turbo Smart C2A with amalgam retention Compressor Cattani K500E Software OASiS and Digora for Windows