Fluoridation

House of Lords written question – answered on 1st April 2008.

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Photo of Earl Baldwin of Bewdley Earl Baldwin of Bewdley Crossbench

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Further to the Written Answer by Lord Darzi of Denham on 30 January (WA 122—23), what is their assessment of the appropriateness of the British Fluoridation Society giving advice on the fluoride content of water for infant formula.

Photo of Lord Darzi of Denham Lord Darzi of Denham Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department of Health, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health)

The British Fluoridation Society has a wide range of contacts with academic bodies, professional associations and other voluntary organisations here and abroad. Its advice on infant formula, which is now also available on the National Fluoride Information Centre's website, replicates that given by the American Dental Association and the Centre for Disease Control.

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Annotations

Leigh Storey
Posted on 6 Apr 2008 3:00 pm (Report this annotation)

Prescribing medication for individuals, and certainly for an entire population, must be subject to strong ethical principles. These principles have been enshrined in internationally accepted codes of ethics since the Nuremberg Trials at the end of World War II. Here is a short exerpt from the British Medical Journal that describes the Code:

* The judgment by the war crimes tribunal laid down 10 standards to which physicians must conform when carrying out experiments on human subjects in a new code that is now accepted worldwide.
* This judgment established a new standard of ethical medical behavior for the post World War II human rights era. Among other requirements, this document enunciates the requirement of voluntary informed consent of the human subject. The principle of voluntary informed consent protects the right of the individual to control his own body.
* This code also recognises that the risk must be weighed against the expected benefit, and that unnecessary pain and suffering must be avoided.
* This code recognises that doctors should avoid actions that injure human patients.
* The principles established by this code for medical practice now have been extended into general codes of medical ethics.

Foremost is the concept of “informed consent”. This means that medication can only be given to someone with their clear, unambiguous consent, and only after they have received full, truthful information about that medication and demonstrated that they have understood.

Mass fluoridation clearly violates the consent rule.