HC Deb 26 July 1999 vol 336 c33W
Mr. Todd

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will review the legal framework regulating the fluoridation of water supplies; and if he will make a statement. [91552]

Ms Jowell

The White Paper "Saving Lives: Our Healthier Nation" acknowledged that present legislation on fluoridation is not working. We have commissioned a scientific review of the evidence on fluoride and health, which is due to be complete by the end of February 2000. If the review confirms that there are benefits to dental health from fluoridation and that there are no significant risks, we intend to introduce a legal obligation on water companies to fluoridate where there is strong local support for doing so.

Mr. Crausby

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the cost of fluoridating all drinking water in the north-west. [92699]

Ms Jowell

Assuming the review of scientific evidence shows benefits from fluoridation and no significant risks, decisions on schemes will be taken by local authority area and costs will be assessed for each individual scheme.

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