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Category Press Release
Publish Date 12/1/2017
Author Paul Cochrane
Title New California Legislation Signed Into Law in Response to Mycobacterium Outbreak at Dental Clinic
Introduction LA Testing offers comprehensive analytical services to identify microbial pathogens to protect the public from environmental exposure risks.

Huntington Beach, CA, December 1st, 2017

Last month, California’s Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 1277. The bill requires the Dental Board of California to amend regulations on the minimum standards for infection control. It requires water, or other methods used for dental irrigation, to be sterile or contain recognized disinfecting or antibacterial properties when used in dental procedures that expose dental pulp.

The bill was authored by Tom Daly, a California State Assembly member representing the 69th district. The district includes Anaheim, the location of a dental clinic that was linked to an outbreak of Mycobacterium abscessus infections in 2016. Dozens of children came down with infections following dental pulpotomy procedures that took place in the clinic.

Mycobacterium abscessus is a bacterium distantly related to the ones that cause tuberculosis and leprosy. M. abscessus is part of a group of environmental mycobacteria that can be found in water, soil and dust. It has also been known to contaminate medications and products, including medical devices. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that infections from M. abscessus are usually caused by injections of substances contaminated with the bacterium or through invasive medical procedures employing contaminated equipment or materials.

“This new legislation is in direct response to the outbreak that sickened over 60 children that was linked to a contaminated internal water system used during their treatment,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager at LA Testing’s Huntington Beach facility. “Hopefully it prevents cases like this from ever happening again at dental clinics across California.”

Also working to prevent these types of outbreaks are the scientists at LA Testing. They help to prevent the spread of microbial pathogens in dental clinics and other healthcare environments through laboratory testing of water, surfaces, medical devices and other sources of contamination. To do this, LA Testing operates a network of laboratories in California that provide sterility and microbial testing services. These services not only protect patients, medical professionals and caregivers from exposure hazards, they are also instrumental in assessing whether or not infection control procedures are effective. This can prevent costly lawsuits that are frequently associated with these types of outbreaks.

To learn more about microbial testing or other environmental, occupational, health and safety services, please visit www.LATesting.com, email info@LATesting.com or call (800) 755-1794. 

About LA Testing

LA Testing is California’s leading laboratory for indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash and smoke damage, particulates and other chemicals.  In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the general public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA LAP LLC., AIHA ELLAP, AIHA EMLAP and AIHA IHLAP, CDC Elite, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health and other states.  LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro and San Diego.