Emergency drugs and equipment in primary dental care

This publication is a reviewed and updated publication of the NDAC 1999 publication ‘Emergency Dental Drugs’. It identifies a list of drugs and equipment which should be available to manage medical emergencies within the dental setting.

Appendix 3 Transport of medical oxygen cylinders

The Health and Safety Executive advise that oxygen cylinders as used in dentistry, which include a regulator, hose and mask, form part of a “ready to use” set. As such they are exempt from European Agreements concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR) by virtue of paragraph (b). Measures need to be taken to prevent leakage of contents in normal conditions of carriage.[21]

The vehicle insurance company should be informed if a vehicle is to be used to transport medical oxygen.

You must ensure that:

  • the cylinder valve is properly closed;
  • the equipment is carried securely in the vehicle;
  • the equipment is carried in purpose-made bags or cases;
  • the equipment is removed from the vehicle as soon as possible.

Duty-holders will still need to carry out a risk assessment and provide appropriate training under other legislation such as the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations and the Provision and Use of Workplace Equipment Regulations.[21]

Such training should include:

  • adequate information about the properties of the gas;
  • correct operating procedures for the cylinder;
  • awareness of the potential hazards of the load including the precautions and actions to be taken in the event of an emergency or oxygen leak.


Email: NHSDentistry@gov.scot

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