BUSINESS QUESTION – FLUORIDATION – 23 October 2008

Dr Julian Lewis: May we have a statement soon from a Health Minister on the abuse of public money by the South Central Strategic Health Authority and Southampton City National Health Service Primary Care Trust in relation to a consultation about fluoridation, which is due to affect Southampton and parts of my constituency? The Strategic Health Authority has issued a very one-sided consultation document, and the PCT must have spent thousands of pounds of public money on producing reply postcards where first-class postage is paid. I am holding one of the postcards, which state:

“I support fluoridation as a safe and effective method of reducing high levels of dental decay for children and adults.”

It is clear that those bodies have made up their minds and that this consultation is a sham, and a Health Minister needs to step in quickly.

[The Deputy Leader of the House of Commons (Chris Bryant): I do not know whether I want to get my teeth into that issue. [Interruption.] There needs to be one bad joke every week, does there not? The important issue is that although I cannot promise the hon. Gentleman a statement, the subject would be very suitable for either a topical debate or an Adjournment debate. Obviously, I shall ensure that his comments are taken into consideration by the Secretary of State for Health.]

[For later developments, click here.]