24 February 2009
Q. Do I need to buy an automatic external defibrillator for the surgery?
An automatic external defibrillator (AED) increasingly regarded as a necessary item of equipment in the diagnosis and management of cardiac arrest and its precursors. The failure to use an AED on a collapsed patient may result in a member of the dental team being challenged if it can be shown that it could have favourably influenced to the outcome. This could also result in criticism of the dental practitioner or DCP responsible for equipping and arranging training for the practice. The existence of a recommendation of this nature from a body as authoritative as the Resuscitation Council (RC) means that a dental professional may be challenged where the standard of care provided differs from these guidelines.
Dental Protection is not an arbiter of clinical opinion; however, members are advised to study the RC guidelines carefully and review the implications for their own practice setting(s). The standard by which a dental professional will be judged is whether a reasonable, respected and competent body of opinion would support the approach to treatment and the facilities available to support it.
Our position statement is available here