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SAAD Assessed Sedation Nurse Course

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The National Course in Conscious Sedation for Dentistry is both suitable as an introduction to postgraduate education in sedation and also as a refresher for practitioners wishing to remain up to date with current techniques and contemporary teaching. The programme offered changes frequently to meet the needs of practitioners both within practice, the Community Dental Service and secondary care. Practitioners are encouraged to enrol their dental nurse on the parallel programme as conscious sedation provision is essentially a team activity. SAAD’s teaching is provided by a faculty of the best known names in dental sedation within the UK. Our course provides a sound foundation in basic conscious sedation techniques. It also investigates the challenges of less commonly used techniques in the UK and those used in other countries. SAAD is well known for providing entertainment as well as sound education. This course provides an investment for patients and enjoyable continuing professional dental education for practitioners and dental nurses. The SAAD National Course provides theoretical and practical instruction in all aspects relating to the current use of Conscious Sedation techniques. The course is designed for practitioners who wish to commence the administration of sedation techniques and also as an update for those who wish to keep abreast of current professional standards. The teaching provides a core level of knowledge based on the current Dental Sedation Teachers Group guidelines which is appropriate to postgraduate education. Mainstream techniques (intravenous midazolam and Relative Analgesia) are covered in detail. Alternative and more advanced conscious sedation techniques are also discussed. Practitioners are encouraged to further their core knowledge with assisted / mentored practical training. Advanced techniques must only be considered where practitioners have considerable experience and appropriate clinical supervision.

Course Content

  • Aspects of anxiety and pain control, treatment planning and patient assessment. The use of behavioural management, selection and appropriate use of drugs for sedation techniques.
  • Physiology, anatomy and pharmacology relevant to Conscious Sedation.
  • Organisation of the dental team, medico-legal aspects of sedation, record keeping, psychological and physiological monitoring of the sedated patient.
  • Revision of the requirements of the General Dental Council in relation to the provision of Basic Life Support. Current UK Resuscitation Council Guidelines will be provided.
  • Clinical cases of various conscious sedation techniques are assessed and practitioners may have practical experience of Relative Analgesia.

Practitioners completing the SAAD Course are strongly advised to gain further practical and clinical exyou're perience, under the guidance of a practitioner experienced in the use of Conscious Sedation techniques. Sample programme

Clinical Supervision

The SAAD National course can provide the underpinning knowledge required and an introduction to the clinical skills for sedation, but it is necessary to acquire clinical experience before embarking on independent practice.

The IACSD Standards for Conscious Sedation in the Provision of Dental Care’( April 2015) state that practitioners offering supervised clinical experience in conscious sedation must now be accredited by a university, deanery or IACSD (p34, 86).

Following publication of the IACSD standards in April 2015, dentists, doctors, dental hygienists/therapists and dental nurses who have no previous experience in conscious sedation for dentistry must now undertake appropriate training before commencing independent clinical practice. All training programmes for ‘new starters’ must include supervised clinical experience and have external validation. UK university-based courses and those run by Postgraduate Deaneries are deemed to be compliant. Other courses leading to independent (i.e. unsupervised) practice, including those run by private providers, must be accredited by IACSD. ‘Update’ courses for experienced sedationists and nurses do not need external accreditation.

The IACSD course accreditation process is straightforward and free. The application form may be downloaded from the FDSRCS Eng website

Applicants simply need to show how they intend to ensure that the trainees:

1) will access appropriate knowledge and skills training (IACSD Appendix 1). This might be provided in-house or by attending an appropriate course e.g. the SAAD National Course.


2) will have access to an appropriately trained and experienced sedationist who will act as a clinical supervisor for the required number of cases (IACSD Table 1). All supervised sedation experience must be recorded in an appropriate log book (e.g. available from the DSTG website).

Once submitted, the application form will be assessed by the Accreditation Sub-Committee of IACSD. The process usually takes less than one month. If approved, the course becomes ‘IACSD Accredited’ and the designated clinical supervisors are then approved to supervise trainees on this (but not other) courses. Clinical supervisors cannot be approved unless they are associated with an accredited course. Until the required number of supervised cases have been completed the trainee (dentist, doctor, dental hygienist/therapist or dental nurse) is unable to provide sedation independently.

NB: The role of the IACSD Accreditation Sub-Committee was taken over by the Sedation Training Accreditation Committee (STAC) in June 2017. The procedure for course accreditation remains the same but the email address for applications has changed to

SAAD has recently introduced schemes to facilitate to acquisition of 'supervised clinical experience' for both dentists an dental nurses. For further information please see SAAD Assessed Sedationist scheme or SAAD Assessed Sedation Nurse scheme.

To reserve a place on the SAAD National Course

The course fee is £700. SAAD members pay a discounted rate of £670.

Please ensure that you are logged onto the website as a member to pay the discounted rate.

For courses later than the 'next available' please go to 'view all courses' or select the date from the list below.

  • 4th & 5th November 2017 - fully booked

Transfer, cancellation and refund policy


SAAD is at the forefront of postgraduate teaching of sedation techniques in dentistry. The Society runs courses for the whole dental team encouraging the safe provision of conscious sedation. Other activities include providing scientific seminars, giving expert advice to other bodies including the Department of Health and the General Dental Council; providing experts for guidelines and standards documents; giving expert evidence to the courts; promoting research in the field of pain and anxiety control and providing individual support and advice to members. Membership of the society is open to any registered dental or medical practitioner, dental nurse or dental therapist/hygienist.