Q Review — Summer 2017

In response to the tragic deaths of two otherwise healthy children who received dental treatment while under anesthesia in 2015 and 2016, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 2235 into effect on January 1, 2017.

AB 2235, referred to as “Caleb’s Law”, amends the Dental Practice Act to require the Dental Board to:

  • Generate a report on whether current regulations for pediatric dental anesthesia provide adequate protection to the pediatric dental patient
  • Require dentists to report a pediatric death or transportation to a hospital related to general anesthesia
  • Require that written informed consent forms contain certain language

A follow-up bill, AB 224, redefines “general anesthesia” and defines “deep sedation.” AB 224 also includes these requirements for any dental procedure involving general anesthesia or deep sedation:

  • For patients under 7 years of age, there must be present the operating dentist, a dental sedation assistant and a dedicated monitor, all of whom possess the appropriate Dental Board permits and life support and airway management training.
  • For children between 7 and 13 years of age, the operating dentist must have present at least two support staff of which at least one must possess the appropriate life support and airway management training.