The Texas Board of Dental Examiners has temporarily suspended the license of Houston Dentist Dr. Bethaniel Jefferson after a young patient suffered a severe brain injury after sedation.
“About every other day someone dies in a dental office in the United States,” says Dr. Craig Jacobs, Owner of the Children 1st Dental and Surgery Center, “primarily because they don’t have the proper equipment or trained personnel who know how to respond to an emergency.”
State records claim Dr. Jefferson failed to call for emergency help for hours after the patient suffered seizures during sedation.
Children 1st Dental and Surgery Center officials say the horrible tragedy should encourage other dentists to send patients requiring sedation to a surgical center, where pediatric dentists and emergency personnel are better equipped to protect children.
Hundreds of dentists already refer patients to the Children 1st Dental and Surgery Center after the Texas Dental Board cracked down on the practice of restraining children in a “papoose” for extensive dental work.
“Parents need to ask a lot of questions before they consent to their children being sedated in a regular dental office,” says Jacobs. “What kind of personnel do you have and what kind of equipment do you have, and what is the history of the facility?”
Children 1st now has two locations in the Houston Area. 8700 South Gessner and 8545 Gulf Freeway.
The surgical center invites the media to highlight the growing safety issues in the dental community.