From the Office of State Senator John Carona

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 25, 1999
CONTACT: John Krueger, 512/463-0116

SENATE APPROVES FINAL PASSAGE OF SENATOR CARONA'S ANESTHESIOLOGY LEGISLATION

(AUSTIN)--The Texas Senate today approved final passage of legislation, S.B. 1340, by Senator John Carona (R-Dallas) to establish minimum standards for administering anesthesia in outpatient facilities. This legislation was drafted in response to the tragic death of Kami Favors in 1997 after she was admitted for a simple procedure of having tubes inserted into her ears in a doctor's office in Odessa, TX. "It is always unfortunate when a family must suffer such a tremendous loss before there is awareness of a protection gap in our state laws," Senator Carona remarked. "This bill should help prevent another family having to deal with the pain the Favors have been living with the past two years."

Under this legislation, the state Board of Medical Examiners and Board of Nurse Examiners will establish minimum safety standards for office procedures involving the administration of anesthesia. These requirements will include: emergency procedures and equipment; responsibilities of the physician directing patient care; qualifications of all personnel involved in providing care; patient monitoring procedures and equipment; and proper documentation. Under current law, there are no regulations in place to monitor anesthesia procedures provided outside of a hospital or licensed ambulatory surgical center.

"While most physicians or nurse anesthetists in Texas use accepted safety guidelines in performing these services, the tragic fact remains that some do not maintain these standards and, as a result, have unnecessarily jeopardized patients' lives," Senator Carona added.

The bill will now be sent to Governor Bush for his signature into law.

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