The Chief Dental Officer for Wales, David Thomas, has said that there is strong scientific evidence that adding fluoride to the water supply can significantly improve dental health in all areas of the country; the Welsh Government has said there are no plans to implement the scheme just yet but after some discussion with Health Minister Mark Drakeford, have said that they will continue to review the policy.
Giving evidence to the National Assembly’s Health and Social Care Committee, Mr Thomas said ‘In terms of fluoridation, the Welsh Government policy line is that there are no plans to fluoridate the water supply. I have discussed the issue with the Minister. There are some particular political and financial issues that would make fluoridation difficult, but it’s something that we will continue to keep under review because obviously there is evidence that the health of the whole community is improved with fluoridation.’
Critics have argued that this practice is ‘mass medication’ but Mr Thomas countered that, according to scientific evidence, adding fluoride to the water supply ‘certainly provides an improvement in oral health for all members of the population.’ He went on to suggest that research has shown there could be a reduction of inequality between ‘the haves and the have-nots’ to provide all sections of society with better dental health.