17 December 2015

Regional towns to benefit from fluoridated drinking water

The towns of Kununurra and Newman will have fluoridated drinking water in 2017.

These communities are some of the few un-fluoridated pockets remaining in Western Australia.

Community water fluoridation is an important, cost-effective public health measure which plays a critical role in reducing dental decay and improving oral health. The benefits and safety of fluoridation of public drinking water supplies is supported by overwhelming scientific evidence.

Fluoridated drinking water particularly benefits children and those on a lower income as it is delivered directly into their home at no incremental cost. It contributes to a suite of oral health initiatives that include healthy diet, good oral hygiene, appropriate use of fluoridated toothpaste and regular dental check-ups, and will complement the existing public dental health services already available in the towns.

Fluoridation of water is backed by authoritative health research agencies and government bodies in Australia and worldwide, including the World Health Organization and the National Health and Medical Research Council.

Fluoridation of these public water supplies is scheduled for completion by December 2017.

More than 90 per cent of the Western Australian population, including most regional areas, have had fluoridated water supplies for more than 40 years.

The Department of Health will work with the Shires of Wyndham East Kimberley and East Pilbara over coming months to keep the communities fully informed and to answer resident queries.

For more information on community water fluoridation visit www.healthywa.wa.gov.au (external site) and search “fluoride in drinking water” or telephone (08) 9388 4999.

ENDS

Media contact: (08) 9222 4333

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