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New California Law Requires Adding 2 Words to Informed Consent Language

In January 2017, California Assembly Bill (AB) 2235 took effect, which added to the Dental Practice Act’s definition of unprofessional conduct the failure of dental practitioners to obtain the written informed consent using mandatory language from a minor patient’s parent or guardian prior to administering general anesthesia or conscious sedation. 

In January 2020, AB 1622 will take effect, which will require that two additional words to be added – “family physician” – to the mandatory language:

“The administration and monitoring of general anesthesia may vary depending on the type of procedure, the type of practitioner, the age and health of the patient, and the setting in which anesthesia is provided. Risks may vary with each specific situation. You are encouraged to explore all the options available for your child’s anesthesia for his or her dental treatment, and consult with your dentist, family physician, or pediatrician as needed.”

Dentists in California should ensure that they have implemented the updated language to their informed consent policy by January 1, 2020.

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