The Single Most Important Reason Why Every Dentist Needs Advanced Life Support Training

You can save someone's life.

It's as simple and singularly significant as that. But don't just take our word for it. Find out how the emergency training Dr. Steve E. Chamish got at DOCS Education's Dental Advanced Life Support (DALS®) courses prepared him to be a lifesaver.

With more than thirty years of dental experience under his belt, Dr. Chamish has come across his fair share of tricky cases and unexpected situations. But one recent medical emergency at his office left him and his staff grateful for the DALS training they received.

How long have you been using sedation in your practice?

I've been with DOCS Education since 2000. I met Dr. Silverman at a Philadelphia course and started with the Oral Sedation Dentistry [OSD] course. In 2008, I became certified in IV sedation due to revised legal requirements in Delaware. The timing actually worked out well. The law stated I couldn't perform conscious sedation without being IV certified, and I had wanted to treat more difficult cases as I was comfortable doing general anesthesia. Becoming IV certified was the next logical step.

I've taken OSD, IV Sedation Certification and DALS all through DOCS Education.

Why did you take the DALS course?

OSD and IV training are great at explaining how to handle emergency protocols for those scenarios. But it got me thinking, what about being prepared for all crisis situations? I wanted more training, and DALS gave me that. I feel that my staff and I are sufficiently prepared. I've taken the course twice now; the last session was in 2013.

Have there been any circumstances when you've used your DALS training?

Just recently my practice had a situation with one of my hygienists; she had been experiencing pain in her right arm and chest. She came to me saying, "I think I'm having a heart attack," and I sprang into action. I followed the protocol just as it was taught in DALS down to the letter. I delegated as I had been trained; we started an IV line when needed and were with her executing the correct steps until the emergency medical team arrived. Another staff member was taking thorough notes each minute of the emergency. When the EMT arrived one of them stated that he's never seen a code run so well in his 20 years on the job.

My staff and I are so grateful for that training. My hygienist survived the heart attack and the experience validated the importance of DALS training in my office.

That's an incredible story. How is the DALS training different from other safety training you've received?

It's hard to understand the true level of preparedness you need until you're faced with an emergency in your practice. Emergency preparedness is a topic covered in OSD and IV, but DALS covers everything.

It's a great feeling walking into my practice and knowing that should someone experience an emergency, my staff and I are well trained in providing emergency response care.

How long have you been practicing dentistry?

35 years. My practice is New Castle Dental Associates in New Castle, Delaware.

What made you choose dentistry as a career?

I always wanted to be a doctor growing up. I liked the idea of helping people with the journey of their health. With dentistry, I get to use my hands as well as my head. The end result is literally in my hands as I'm performing a treatment, and I just love that.

What's the guiding principle at your practice?

Do what's right for the patient.

Clearly, Dr. Chamish applies the same "do what's right" principle to his staff, too.

When can you and your team get your advanced life support training? We're glad you asked.

Three DALS courses are coming up in 2015:

  • Dallas | October 23-24, 2015
  • Seattle | November 13-15, 2015
  • Ann Arbor | December 4-5, 2015

Click here to learn more.

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The information contained in this, or any case study post in Incisor should never be considered a proper replacement for necessary training and/or education regarding adult oral conscious sedation. Regulations regarding sedation vary by state. This is an educational and informational piece. DOCS Education accepts no liability whatsoever for any damages resulting from any direct or indirect recipient's use of or failure to use any of the information contained herein. DOCS Education would be happy to answer any questions or concerns mailed to us at 106 Lenora Street, Seattle, WA 98121. Please print a copy of this posting and include it with your question or request.