September 2011

Volume 28, Issue 3

Investing in professional advocacy: a case study of a successful fluoridation campaign in rural New South Wales, Australia

Authors: S. Sivaneswaran G.T.F. Chong
doi: 10.1922/CDH_2555Sivaneswaran05


In New South Wales (NSW), Australia, the responsibility to implement water fluoridation rests with local government Councils, partly accounting for the hindrance in its statewide implementation. Since 2003, the NSW Health Department has been actively promoting water fluoridation to the remaining unfluoridated rural communities. Objectives: To describe the community education and consultation strategies which led to the implementation of fluoridation in two rural NSW towns. Methods: In February 2005, the Mid-Western Regional Council and the NSW Health Department undertook a comprehensive community education process followed by a consultation process. The education process included the organization of public forums; distribution of fluoridation information packs; building rapport with the local media; and the use of local disease and treatment data to demonstrate oral health disparities with neighbouring fluoridated towns. The consultation process to determine support for fluoridation included seeking written submissions from the community and conducting interviews on a random sample of households by an independent research organization. Results: A total of 502 (N=1,012) interviews to determine support for fluoridation were completed, achieving a response rate of 49.6%. 54% of respondents wanted their water supplies fluoridated, 25% did not and the remaining 21% were unsure. In June 2005, the Mid-Western Regional Council resolved to implement water fluoridation and fluoride was added to the towns’ water supplies in November 2007. Conclusions: This case study demonstrates that it is possible to garner community support for water fluoridation with the use of a multifaceted approach in educating and consulting communities and stakeholders. Key words: water fluoridation, pro-fluoridation campaign, community consultation process, community education program, community fluoridation support


Other articles in this issue

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Editorial - Position papers by EADPH Special Interest Groups 190-190 Download
Tooth wear and erosion: Methodological issues in epidemiological and public health research and the future research agenda 191-195 Download
The relationship between tooth wear in the primary and permanent dentitions 196-200 Download
The efficacy of dentifrices on extrinsic tooth stains among community dwelling adults in India – a randomised controlled trial 201-205 Download
Clinical and socio-demographic factors influencing the oral health-related quality of life of Chinese elders 206-210 Download
The effects of chronic pain on oral health related quality of life in patients with anterior disc displacement with reduction. 211-215 Download
Dental self-care and visiting behaviour in relation to social inequality in caries experience 216-221 Download
Clinical evaluation of chlorhexidine for the control of dental biofilm in children with special needs 222-226 Download
Oral health related quality of life among children with parents and those with no parents 227-231 Download
Psychometric properties of long and short forms of the Child Perceptions Questionnaire (CPQ11-14) in a Thai population 232-237 Download
Dental examiners consistency in applying the ICDAS criteria for a caries prevention community trial 238-242 Download
Investing in professional advocacy: a case study of a successful fluoridation campaign in rural New South Wales, Australia 243-247 Download
Relationship of caries and fluorosis in adolescents from high- and low-fluoride areas in Iran 248-252 Download


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