Making news: Phoenix College, FastMed, US Dental Triage

Phoenix College provides support to assist with coronavirus

 The number of Coronavirus cases continue to rise in Arizona and across the country. Those on the front lines are in dire need of personal protection equipment (PPE) as shortages of the most essential tools are becoming widespread. Phoenix College is doing its part to combat this problem by donating $8,000 worth of PPE’s from its Allied Health programs to local community partners.
The college is currently redistributing personal protection equipment from its Phlebotomy and Medical Lab Technology programs to help those in the medical field during this crisis. These programs currently serve more than 600 students.
Phoenix College will share its supply of gloves, gowns, face shields and masks to its community partners, which includes St. Joseph’s Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital Clinical Laboratory and Chandler Regional Hospital. The school is also loaning two, much-needed ventilators to medical professionals at this time. The ventilators are crucial for those battling severe cases of the Coronavirus and anticipated to be in short supply as numbers continue to rise throughout April.
“At such a pivotal moment in history, we want to offer aid in whatever way we can,” said Maria Reyes, Dean of Industry & Public Service Academic Affairs of Phoenix College. “We had a surplus of PPE’s on campus right now for our educational programs and thought they would serve a greater public use with medical professionals in need.”
The United States Department of Labor states that the spread of Covid-19 can be hindered by using a combination of standard precautions, contact precautions, airborne precautions, and eye protection (e.g., goggles or face shields) to protect healthcare workers with exposure to the virus. PPE’s are necessary to keep workers on the front-lines safe from contracting and/or spreading the virus.
Phoenix College has shifted all classes to an online format and has no concrete plans to reopen to the public until it is deemed safe to do so. In the meantime, the school will continue to share its PPE supplies with its community partners.

FastMed Urgent Care launches COVID-19 self-assessment tool

FastMed Urgent Care, one of the nation’s largest urgent care providers, announces the launch of its COVID-19 self-assessment tool on FastMed is offering its COVID-19 self-assessment tool as a free public service to help patients quickly decide where to seek appropriate medical care based on a brief series of questions that help assess the risk of coronavirus.

While FastMed is currently not a COVID-19 testing center, its 109 clinics across three states are otherwise well-equipped to manage urgent medical needs including symptoms of cold, cough, flu and other common illnesses and injuries. If the tool assesses the patient as having a low risk for coronavirus, patients are encouraged to check-in online at, complete their e-registration, and select the option to be texted when they are ready to be seen. This is recommended as both a convenience for our patients and to minimize crowding in clinic reception areas that could lead to unnecessary exposure.

Local company launches solution to dental health crisis

Pre COVID-19 pandemic, the American Dental Association reported that every 14 seconds someone visits the emergency room with a dental need. Dental clinics are struggling to stay open across the country due to practices being limited to emergencies only, and there is an influx of people visiting the hospital with a dental health crisis. To help keep people out of the emergency room during these unprecedented times, CEO of Performance Partners and Virtual Support Solutions, Michael Bonanno, launched US Dental Triage, a 24/7 hour hotline for people experiencing a dental emergency.

“Our country is experiencing a period of deep uncertainty and our emergency rooms are already overwhelmed and not equipped to handle definitive dental care,” says Bonanno. “We launched US Dental Triage for those who are having challenges finding someone to treat them or are going into emergency rooms and becoming at risk of contracting the coronavirus.”

For those who are experiencing a dental emergency, US Dental Triage urges people to call its 24-hour hotline at (800)-700-0908. The company has over 40 team members on staff to connect callers experiencing urgent dental needs with an office that is open and available to see the patient right away. Once matched with a dentist, the patient will have the opportunity to do a virtual consultation to talk about his or her symptoms and ensure that the issue warrants an emergency visit.

Patient health and safety are US Dental Triage’s top priorities for those seeking help. The prevention of the spread of infectious diseases is already part of regular dental practice for all doctors in its network. New protocols to existing safety precautions include a dental staff member escorting patient directly to a pre-sterilized room. The dentist and dental assistants will be wearing gloves and masks, and every patient will be isolated from any others seeking medical attention on the premises.

“We are also providing a solution to dentists and their teams through our sister company,
Virtual Support Solutions (VSS), which allows us to give support to their practices during these challenging times,” says the former Executive Director of the Arizona Dental Association and Virtual Support Solutions Director, Kevin B. Earle. “We are able to add them to the US Dental Triage Network and offer virtual call rollover at any hour of the day or night, so they don’t miss any emergency calls.  Patients can avoid a scary trip to the ER through this platform to safely and effectively be treated for their urgent dental needs in a dentist’s office. Dental practices also have the opportunity to gain referrals through new patients who call in and don’t currently have a dentist.”

VSS will pre-screen the patients and provide tools for the dentist to conduct virtual consultations and make appointments as an extension of the dental office. Since Virtual Support Solutions’ launch in 2017, the company has had a 100% retention rate of clients. It is currently accepting dentists who would like to become part of the network. For more information, dentists can visit or call (844)-222-9565.