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Do Emergency Checklists Prevent Costly New Regulations?

Updated: Aug 21, 2023

Can a $129 emergency checklist prevent a significant increase in the cost of dental care?

Due to six deaths following complications related to anesthesia in dental offices since 2014, and because of their interest in dental patient safety, members of the North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners met to ponder adding a requirement for dentists to have a clinician licensed in providing anesthesia alongside them during sedation-related procedures. During the Board's meeting, Dr. Rob Harper offered two lessons learned about the level of dental emergency preparation in those six cases:

  • There is a lack of experienced support personnel who can respond to a cardiac or respiratory emergency; and

  • Dental staff are not sufficiently experienced in the clinical management of such emergencies.

If adopted, this requirement would increase the cost of dental care significantly. One witness at the meeting said it could cost an additional $3500 PER CASE to comply with the regulation. And, many experts say there is no scientific evidence this rule change would enhance dental patient safety or decrease adverse events in the administering of sedation for dental care. If dentistry wants to improve dental sedation safety, protect the Operator Anesthetist model, avoid more regulation, and risk-proof dental practices, it's clear we must improve medical emergency preparedness. Quick Reference Checklists (QRCs) are a cost-effective, low-tech, no-new-regulation way to improve medical emergency preparedness. QRCs are also critical to advanced life support during patient emergencies.

QRCs are a proven solution to effectively managing a high acuity, low frequency, increased complexity medical emergency in the dental office. They are the key to improving dental patient safety. Absolutely, unequivocally you ARE going to forget simple lifesaving skills and protocols during a high-stress, pressurized event!

A Quick Reference Checklist is the ultimate emergency response tool! Don’t lose a patient, your practice, or your license because you didn't use a QRC and thus forgot a critical life-saving step in the midst of an emergency. Risk-proof your career by getting a QRC for each operatory in your practice. There is absolutely no doubt that Checklists are proven. A low-tech solution during a highly pressurized event where you are likely to forget simple life-saving skills. These are laminated and are 2-sided. The QRCs are 9 x 12 inches in size so they're easy to read when stress-induced adrenalin sets in! We recommend purchasing a QRC for each operatory so you'll never have trouble locating them when a patient is deteriorating. They can be purchased individually or as a complete set:

  • The General Dentistry QRC - 12 pages covering 24 emergencies - $129

  • The Sedation Dentistry QRC - 4 pages covering 8 emergencies - $79

  • The Pediatric Dentistry QRC - 6 pages covering 12 emergencies - $99

Or, purchase all three QRCs in a bundle for only $349 per set. Priceless!

QRC for General Dentists - $129 for 24 Medical Emergency laminated algorithms

QRC for Pediatric Dentistry - $99 for 12 laminated medical emergency treatment algorithms

QRC for Sedation Dentistry - $79 for 8 laminated medical emergency treatment algorithms

You are either Prepared or Unprepared for a dental medical emergency. "I'm sorta prepared," or "I'm probably prepared" means you are unprepared. There is no middle ground. These tragic patient deaths prove the adage that we never rise to the occasion during a dental medical emergency, rather we sink to the level of our training and tools. While no specific outcome can ever be guaranteed, you can be better prepared! Having and using a QRC in your dental practice documents your due diligence to be Medical Emergency Prepared with the correct training and tools when the inevitable emergency occurs. Get Prepared today... order your QRCs to save a life, save your practice, prevent needless regulation, and preserve your future.

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