Type to search

Supporting Your Practice

How Do You Manage Refusal to Wear a Mask?

Dr. Clive Friedman
Pediatric Dentist, London ON

So here’s the scenario: a child patient comes into your office accompanied by a parent who is not wearing a mask. When you kindly explain to them that masks are compulsory under public health guidelines, they refuse.

What’s your next move?

In this episode of CDA Oasis Live, Dr. John O’Keefe invites Dr. Clive Friedman, a pediatric dentist from London Ontario, to walk through this very scenario. An expert in the care of persons with special needs, Dr. Friedman highlights the importance of first giving the individual the space and opportunity to explain their position, so we can better understand their point of view. He addresses the notion of “reasonable accommodation” and breaks down this tricky situation into actionable steps that ensure both a respectful approach to the patient/caregiver and due consideration to the safe management of your practice.

“It’s about involving the individual in their own process. Getting them to tell us what’s going to work for them. Then if it is within our ability to meet it, that’s amazing. If not, it’s our choice.”

We hope you find the conversation useful. We welcome your thoughts, questions and/or suggestions about this post and other topics. Leave a comment in the box below or send us your feedback by email.

Until next time!
CDA Oasis Team

Full Conversation (14.23")

1 Comment

  1. Eleanor Iliescu April 27, 2021

    This is an eye opener and I breathe a sigh of relief as I saw a solution to an event that happened in my workplace. A child patient came in with her father who made it clear he declines to wear a mask. He said it will make him sick as he will inhale his own breath. We have not resolved this issue yet so this conversation between Dr. O’Keefe and Dr. Friedman is very timely. We appreciate the concept of reasonable accommodation and will definitely include it in our protocols.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *