HC Deb 01 February 1965 vol 705 cc714-5
34. Mr. John Hall

asked the Minister of Health what communications he has received from local authorities following the circulation to those authorities of the National Pure Water Association's booklet entitled "Fluoride Facts and Fancy".

Mr. K. Robinson

One authority wrote to draw my Department's attention to the booklet and another asked whether my Department had any further comments.

Mr. Hall

Does the absence of any agreed communication from the local authorities to the Minister mean that local authorities are seized of the undesirability of adding fluoride to water for general consumption?

Mr. Robinson

I hesitate to speculate on the motives of local authorities, but I would prefer to draw precisely the opposite conclusion. It is perhaps of some interest that the two local authorities who did write in both decided to introduce fluoridation as soon as practicable.

Mr. Braine

Does not the Minister agree that fluoridation would do more than any other single step to reduce the toll of dental disease of our children? Does he recollect that he repeatedly pressed the previous Government to get on with fluoridation? Will he say what steps he has taken to bring this desirable reform into being?

Mr. Robinson

I can only say at the moment that the steps taken by the previous Government are being continued and intensified. I certainly agree with the hon. Member that no other public health measure has had such prolonged and detailed investigation before being advised for general use.