HC Deb 23 May 2003 vol 406 cc68-9W
Mr. Kidney

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress the Medical Research Council has made in its programme of work in relation to research into the fluoridation of drinking water. [113460]

Ms Blears

Last September, a working group appointed by the Medical Research Council (MRC) published a report that we had commissioned prioritising the research required to strengthen the evidence base on the fluoridation of water. We have already acted on the MRC"s first priority by commissioning a comparison study of the fluoride absorbed from naturally and artificially fluoridated water. We have asked the Chief Medical Officer and Chief Dental Officer for further advice on both the remainder of the MRC"s recommendation and how the success of existing fluoridation schemes in improving oral health might be extended to other communities who wish it.