12 Oct 2010

House of Lords

House of Lords
Written answers and statements, 27 September 2010
Earl Baldwin of Bewdley (Crossbench)

To ask Her Majesty's Government, in the light of the 1999-2000 systematic scientific review into water fluoridation commissioned by them from the NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination at the University of York, which found that the evidence about reducing inequalities in child dental health was of "poor quality, contradictory and unreliable", what subsequent high quality controlled trials were relied on by the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Public Health, Anne Milton, in her statement of 7 July (HC Deb 344W) that the potential for reducing inequalities was "well illustrated".

Earl Howe (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Quality), Health; Conservative)

The justification for the argument that water fluoridation offers the best prospect of reducing inequalities in oral health is that, in contrast to alternatives for applying fluoride to the teeth such as regular tooth brushing with fluoridated toothpaste, its effects do not depend on individual compliance. In the absence of controlled studies, which are very difficult to design for population-wide interventions, I find the evidence quoted by the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Public Health (Anne Milton) in her reply to the honourable Member for Pendle persuasive.

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