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Fluoride Programs

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The Teeth for Health Program: Fluoridation of NSW Community Water Supplies with Populations of More than 1000 - NSW Program No. 1

Aims or Brief Descriptions

Fluoridation of unfluoridated (largely rural) communities via shire councils and water authorities.


Since July 2004, NSW Health has fully funded fluoridation capital works.

Using scientific and health data a case is presented to councils on why water fluoridation is important.  As the decision can be politicised, efforts are made to help confine it to a health issue.  As an indicator of local public opinion on the subject, a continuous state-wide attitudinal survey on fluoridation has been conducted since 2005.  As the sample size increases each quarter by some 1300 respondents, the survey is gaining increasing validity at local government level.  In some cases, other surveys have been funded to assist councillors better understand their constituents’ views on water fluoridation.  In all cases, the majority of the population support water fluoridation (at state level, more than 80 per cent).

Councils eventually take a vote on the matter and since 2004, some 20 councils have voted in favour and less than four have voted against it (some, for infrastructure reasons).

Teeth for Health provides support and information to councils prior to, during and following the public consultation phase.

Reports or Publications from Project

Fluoride, Smile it’s Natural – Brochure

Involved Organisations

NSW Health, local governments in rural NSW


Access to Fluorides in Small Communities - NSW Program No. 2

Aims or Brief Descriptions

To encourage tooth-brushing with fluoride toothpaste in small, disadvantaged communities by linking to economic development to encourage sustainability.


This is a pilot project that has just started and a health impact assessment (HIA) was completed prior to commencement.  The HIA will be made available once the final report has been received.

Baseline oral health assessments have been completed.

Reports or Publications from Project


Involved Organisations

NSW Health; Warrumbungle Shire Council; Inverell Shire Council

Website: (will soon have the community project included).

The Queensland Government

The Queensland government announced its water fluoridation program in 2008 and since then been fluoridating its water supplies. Their website provides information on the stages of fluoridation and other information on the program.

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Oral Health Promotion Clearinghouse Unit

Adelaide Dental School 
Level 9, Adelaide Health and Medical Sciences building 
The University of Adelaide


T: +61 8 8313 3291