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MoH, Medsafe congratulated for fluoridation regulation

Media Release

The Ministry of Health and Medsafe are to be congratulated for adopting a new amendment to the Medicines Act around water fluoridation

The NZ Dental Association supports the Ministry of Health’s adopting a new regulation under the Medicines Act under section 105(1)(i) to provide that:

“Fluoride-containing substances, including the substances HFA and SSF are not medicines for the purposes of the Medicines Act when they are manufactured and supplied or distributed for the purpose of fluoridating community drinking water supplies.”

This decision confirms previous high court considerations and decisions that have been made by Justice Collins at the High Court who stated that fluoride at the concentration found in community drinking water supply is a not a medicine.

In another recent High Court case Justice Hansen concluded that addition of fluoride to the water supply was legal and permitted by the Health Act 1956, and that the delivery of fluoride in drinking water did notconstitute mass-medication.

The amendment also reiterates the findings of the report titled “Health effects of water fluoridation: a review of the scientific evidence” published on behalf of the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Office of the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor which strongly affirms the scientific evidence into the safety and positive health effects of water fluoridation.

The NZ Dental Association is remains concerned about the constant misrepresentation and scaremongering that some anti fluoride groups continue to voice.

“This decision once again confirms that the anti fluoride lobby has outdated, poorly informed and inaccurately biased views on community water fluoridation. It remains clear that their latest tactic to attempt to deny New Zealander’s the benefits of water fluoridation was again based on pseudo science and emotion rather than evidence based scientific fact” says Dr David Crum.

“The NZ Dental Association’s position is the same as any number of reputable health organizations, based on the scientific evidence community water fluoridation is a safe, effective and cost efficient way of reducing dental caries and reducing health inequalities,” says Dr David Crum.

The NZ Dental Association and the Ministry of Health are not alone in their position. The NZ Medical Association along with the Australian and American Dental Associations, the World Health Organisation and the World Dental Federation to name a few, all support community water fluoridation.


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