Child death investigation: State agency monitoring situation

By Matt Butner - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - While no one yet knows what happened to 6 year-old Jacobi Hill. The clinic where he spent his last hours sits at the center of the investigation. According to its website, the clinic at VCU's School of Dentistry is staffed by students under the close supervision of faculty. Like any other dental practice in Virginia, it is licensed and regulated by the state.

The Department of Health Professions, which regulates dentistry, will not say whether or not it is investigating the incident. A spokesperson did tell us they are aware of it, and are gathering information.

Any state investigation would likely focus on every aspect of Jacobi's care at the clinic, to make sure all regulations were followed-- including those regarding the possible use of anesthesia during his procedure. State law requires that anyone administering any kind of anesthesia be trained and qualified to do so.

In cases where general anesthesia is used for a dental procedure, meaning the patient is rendered unconscious, only a trained dentist, anesthesiologist, or registered nurse anesthetist can administer it.

VCU has not released any details about Jacobi Hill's procedure but as those details emerge, the Department of Health Professions will decide how to proceed.

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