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Water Fluoridation.

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 15 June 2004

Tuesday, 15 June 2004

Questions (314)

Olivia Mitchell

Question:

365 Ms O. Mitchell asked the Minister for Health and Children the number of members who have been assigned to the expert group on fluoridation; and the names of those members. [17296/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Health and Children)

The expert body recommended by the forum has been established. The chairperson of the expert body is Dr. Seamus O'Hickey, former chief dental officer with my Department. Dr. O'Hickey's mix of scientific knowledge, awareness of fluoridation issues and experience of administrative issues leave him well placed to chair the body. The expert body, to be known as the Irish expert body on fluorides and health, held its inaugural meeting in April last.

The terms of reference of the expert body are: to oversee the implementation of the recommendations of the forum on fluoridation; to advise the Minister and evaluate ongoing research — including new emerging issues — on all aspects of fluoride and its delivery methods as an established health technology; and as required to report to the Minister on matters of concern at his or her request or on its own initiative.

The expert body has broad representation, including from the areas of public health medicine, engineering, management, environmental protection, environmental health, dentistry, and health promotion. I am pleased to inform the Deputy that the body has a strong consumer input in members of the public and representatives of consumer interests, in addition to the necessary scientific, managerial and public health inputs. That diversity of backgrounds will enable the expert body to carry out its work effectively.

The membership of the Irish expert body on fluorides and health as at its inaugural meeting was as follows: Dr. Seamus O'Hickey, chairman, Dr. Wayne Anderson, Dr. Paul Beirne, Professor William Binchy, Councillor Jack Bourke, Professor John Clarkson, Mr. Enda Falvey, Mr. Oliver Fogarty, Ms Dorothy Gallagher, Dr. Gerard Gavin, ex officio, Mr. Denis Lyons, Mr. Stephen McDermott, Mr. David Moloney, ex officio, Dr. Joe Mullen, Ms Ursula O’Dwyer, Dr. Brian O’Herlihy, Professor Denis O’Mullane, Ms Biddy O’Neill, Mr. Darragh Page, Mr. Ray Parle, Ms Martina Queally, Mr. Rowland Reece, Mr. Matt Twomey.

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