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Israel’s health minister stuns experts by ending mandatory fluoridation

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g5240 (Published 20 August 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g5240
  1. Judy Siegel-Itzkovich
  1. 1Jerusalem

After nearly 45 years of mandatory fluoridation of tap water throughout Israel, the country’s health minister—a left leaning politician who was formerly mayor of the city of Herzliya—has decided unilaterally to prohibit it. Fluoridation is now mandatory only in Ireland and is optional elsewhere except in the Czech Republic, Sweden, and Holland. Opponents of the minister’s ruling may take the matter to court.

The decision, by Yael German of the Yesh Atid party, amazed experts at Israel’s schools of dentistry and public health because it contravened a year of recommendations and attempts by professionals and the ministry to change German’s mind. But until now they had …

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