NZDA statement on National Party document Oral Health

Published: Thu 12 Dec 2019 11:36 AM
NZDA statement on National Party Health discussion document Oral Health
For attribution to Dr Katie Ayers, President, New Zealand Dental Association:
We welcome the Opposition’s focus on child dental health. The New Zealand Dental Association (NZDA) has long highlighted the 120,000 children overdue for dental check-ups, and over 40,000 children having teeth extracted due to tooth decay each year. Last year alone, 7000 kids under 12 had to leave their parents in waiting rooms for hospital operating theatres to be put under general anaesthetic to have teeth pulled.
This is a system that needs a lot more resources, including better disease prevention services and measures. However, money is not the only solution here, there is a limited pool of oral health professionals, and a cash boost does not alter this.
NZDA is willing to discuss the Scottish system National have highlighted. It has benefits and it has drawbacks. We can show that there are other less expensive preventive measures that will also hugely improve the dental health of New Zealand kids, community water fluoridation being an obvious one.
NZDA recently presented to National a comprehensive, affordable and stepwise plan to improve access to dental care for low income New Zealand adults. It is extremely disappointing that National does not even mention this highly significant issue within their discussion document. Our hope is that the Government will be considerably more receptive and early indications are that they might be.
As dentists and as a profession we continually hear from both sides of the House that they support the Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill, introduced to the House three years ago. Whilst it does not even rate a mention in the discussion document it is our sincere hope that all MPs, particularly those interested in markedly improving oral health in a safe and effective way, will move beyond their political impasse and pass this Bill swiftly.

Next in Lifestyle

And The Oscar Goes To … 'Parasite'
By: Howard Davis
1917's 1,000 Yard Stare
By: Howard Davis
New Zealand set to host World Cup of Floorball in 2022
By: International Floorball Federation
Tuia 250 Voyage ends but Tuia - Our Future is Unstoppable
By: Tuia 250
NZ Fringe 2020 has launched
By: New Zealand Fringe Festival
Tuia 250 ending is just the beginning
By: New Zealand Government
Final stop for Tuia 250 Voyage celebrates past and future
By: Tuia 250
Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla arrival in Capital
By: Ministry for Culture and Heritage
Auckland Fringe Announces New Festival Director
By: Auckland Fringe
2019 NZ Comedy Guild Awards handed out
By: New Zealand Comedy Guild
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media