House of Lords written question – answered on 27th February 2013.

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Photo of Earl Baldwin of Bewdley Earl Baldwin of Bewdley Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Earl Howe on 16 January (WA 127) about the merits of policies to improve children's dental health, how, in weighing the balance of advantage in water fluoridation, they assess the opposition of many of those who receive it.

Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

We have addressed this issue in the regulations we have laid on the public consultations that local authorities will have to undertake on fluoridation proposals. In response to representations we received to our consultation on the content of the regulations, we have decided that the overarching consideration should no longer be that, "the health arguments in favour of proceeding with the proposal outweigh all arguments against proceeding". We consider a wider range of factors should be taken into account including the extent of the support for the proposals, the strength of any scientific evidence or ethical arguments advanced and any evidence of benefit to the health and wellbeing of individuals who would be affected by the proposal.

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