Mercury amalgam used by the NHS in 1996 as a restorative material in dental surgical procedures.

Waiting for an internal review by Department of Health of their handling of this request.

Dear Department of Health,

Please provide details about the physical and chemical/metal/alloy properties of Mercury amalgam used by the NHS in 1996 as a restorative material in dental surgical procedures.

Please include data about NHS use of biocides as sealer's when mercury amalgam was used in 1996:

1.The name of manufacturer(s)
2.The name of each substance in the product including the name of it's active substance and the amount of each substance as a percentage of the whole.
3.The classification of the biocidal/heavy metal/alloy product.
4.Particulars of any likely direct or indirect adverse side effects.
5.Procedures to be followed and measures to be taken in the case of spillage or leakage of the biocidal product and the active substance contained in that biocidal product.

Is the NHS currently using mercury amalgam as a restorative material for pulp cavity fillings.

Yours faithfully,

Granito

Department of Health

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Dear Department of Health,

Your issue with my choice of name is noted. However your name is absent from your correspondence.

I am God in a State of Knowing.....I am the Living Witness to the Evidence of the Name Fraud and I have the Prima Facia evidence in my hand in the form of the Birth Certificate for the dead legal fiction....which you have demanded........by these words let the Living Witness be Known.......for and on the record........

The Living I would be committing fraud by representing the Name on the Birth Certificate which is Crown Copyright Owned.....and for you to aid and abet me to do so is fraud on your part also...........

Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations which were introduced back in the 1980s and, unless there are exemptions in medicine, require all employers to produce risk assessments that include the risks posed by all chemicals in the workplace, among other hazards. Even Tippex is included and apparently it is an offence not to make such reports available.

There is requirement to provide a safe place of work, Some risks are unavoidable but others should not be hidden and safer alternatives should be used wherever possible.

COSHH assessments:

The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002

The COSHH Regulations are designed and enforced to protect workers against ill health and injury caused by exposure to hazardous substances - from mild eye irritation through to chronic lung disease and even death. The regulations require employers to eliminate or reduce exposure to known hazardous substances in a practical way by having carried out risk assessments with regard to the use of these hazardous substances in the workplace; it is not meant to be a paper exercise.

Manufactures of hazardous substances are required to display an orange and black warning symbol on the label and packaging of any substance that is classified as hazardous. The label will also state how substance is toxic, harmful, corrosive or irritant. Manufactures are required to provide material safety data sheets, which contain more detailed information on the hazards present and the required first-aid measures. Practices should retain copies of these data sheets for their records.

Other substances classified as hazardous include:

Substances with an occupational exposure limit (eg mercury)

Biological (infectious) agents directly connected with the work - blood borne viruses are common in dentistry

Any kind of dust in a significant amount
Any other substance classed as hazardous (eg latex)

The use of personal protective equipment will also help to control some risks. Staff should be trained in risk avoidance measures and the whole process should be recorded.

Link: www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg136.pdf

Kind regards

Granito

Dear Department of Health,

1. It appears that nobody or any government agency has the information I requested nor is it collected and recorded. This is both shocking and disturbing.

2. So who or what is collecting data to find out how all these toxic materials and metals are impacting on public health & safety? For example the national register that is currently being set up by Dr Poulter & Jeremy Hunt to record instances where faulty breast implants have caused chronic ill health.

Thank you for your time

Granito a women concerned.

Dear Department of Health,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department of Health's handling of my FOI request:

'Mercury amalgam used by the NHS in 1996 as a restorative material in dental surgical procedures.'.

[ complaint of lack of accountability and responsibility by government agencies to behave transparently and honestly. ]

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

Thank you for your time

Granito a concerned woman

Department of Health

Thank you for contacting the Department of Health.
This is an acknowledgement - please do not reply to this email.
Where a reply is appropriate, we aim to send one within 18 working days,
or 20 working days if your query is a Freedom of Information request or
complaint.
If you have contacted the Department of Health about a current health or
social care campaign, please visit the [1]GOV.UK website, the UK
Government’s official information website, where a response may have been
published.

If your enquiry is about a medical matter, please contact NHS 111 or visit
[2]NHS Choices, or contact your GP surgery.

For general health information you may also find it helpful to refer to
[3]GOV.UK, which includes the Department of Health's [4]'What we
do' section.
Please note that the Department of Health does not process complaints
about the NHS or social services. If you wish to make a complaint about a
healthcare professional, an NHS organisation or a social care provider,
please visit the [5]'Complaints procedure' page on the GOV.UK website.
 
You can find out more about the Department’s commitments from our
[6]Personal Information Charter.

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FreedomofInformation, Department of Health

Dear Sir/Madam,

I can confirm that the Department has received your request for an Internal Review of your Freedom of Information request (Our reference: DE00000843237). This is now being processed by a member of the Freedom of Information team, who will respond to you in due course.

Yours sincerely,

Jamie Scott

Freedom of Information Officer
Department of Health

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Dear Paul Swiderski,

You wrote

'Only a very few adverse reactions have been noted' 'Noted'?

You must know there is no national register to record adverse effects and chronic ill health from chronic exposure to mercury 'medical devices' as there is for breast implants now,implemented this year by Dr Poulter & Jeremy Hunt Health Minister because of public pressure.

The reason chronically ill men women and children are not being 'noted' is because they are not identified or diagnosed and therefore they are denied vital data and treatment.

You wrote 'There have been successive expert reports corroborating the empirical evidence on safety. Mercury exposure from fillings is thought to be about the same as that from the diet, and therefore does not pose a significant health risk.'

Who are these alleged 'experts' and where are their 'reports'? Because I have many other 'expert' reports that claim the opposite. That Mercury is not as 'safe' and 'tested' as you would have me and the public believe.

'In January 2013, governments from 140 countries agreed on final text for a global treaty on mercury – the first global treaty on the environment in well over a decade. The Treaty was then adopted in October 2013, and named the Minamata Convention. This Treaty reflects a global consensus that mercury poses a serious threat to human health and the environment, and applies pressure to eliminate mercury use from the global economy.'Minamata Convention. An NGO Introduction to Mercury Pollution and the Minamata
Convention on Mercury

'Mercury fillings given to millions of Britons every year can be dangerous, the world's biggest health regulator has warned.

Simply chewing could release harmful mercury vapour from the fillings which could be breathed into the lungs, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said.

The regulator had previously advised U.S. dentists that the fillings are safe.

Despite the warning, the British Department of Health issued its own statement yesterday that it continued to believe mercury fillings posed no danger.

Patients in Britain have about eight million mercury fillings a year, a million of which are in children and young adults.

Campaigners blame the highly toxic mercury found in amalgam fillings for a range of ailments.

These include fatigue, depression heart conditions and Alzheimer's disease.

Earlier this month, the U.S. regulator dropped much of its reassuring language on the fillings from its website.

Instead it now says: 'Dental amalgams contain mercury, which may have neurotoxic effects on the nervous systems of developing children and foetuses.'

It adds that mercury vapour is released when amalgam fillings are placed or removed, and during the chewing of food.

The FDA is now carrying out an urgent review of its rules and may end up banning mercury fillings.

Norway and Denmark banned mercury from fillings earlier this year while Finland and Japan have severe restrictions.

More than half of an amalgam filling is made up of mercury, which is more poisonous than lead.

It is mixed with silver, copper and tin, forming a highly durable combination to lock in the mercury.

But it is now accepted that mercury vapour escapes and small amounts are passed into the bloodstream and organs.'

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/articl...
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

How can you tell me that 1 of the most toxic heavy radioactive metals on our planet is safe when it is locked and sealed inside my body an inch away from my brain? Mercury amalgam was used as a restorative material for an apicectomy in 1996. I have suffered and endured over 14 years of chronic ill health caused in my opinion by mercury and a number of other highly toxic materials used routinely in everyday dental practice. I suggest you look at more recent medical and scientific data, which is freely available on the WWW.

Europe

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dental_ama...

In most European countries (for example, the United Kingdom, France, and Italy), amalgam use is unrestricted. Some other countries, such as Sweden and Denmark, have banned the use of mercury in dental amalgams, citing health or environmental concerns.[5] The Swedish Chemicals Inspectorate (KemI) maintains a web site containing a report on the investigation for a general ban on mercury on which it states, "KemI judges that there are strong grounds for banning amalgam for environmental reasons. From a health point of view there is every reason to apply a precautionary approach."[90]
Norway

Amalgam use is illegal in Norway as of 1 January 2008.[91][92]

Sewers from Norwegian dental clinics older than 1994 (or if there is other reason to believe amalgam have ended up in the sewers instead of the patients mouth) shall be cleaned by experienced personnel to properly remove any residual mercury. The detailed procedure to do so is available from Norwegian Pollution Control Authority free of charge.[93][dead link]
Sweden

Amalgam use is illegal in Sweden as of 1995. The Swedish amalgam ban is for both environmental and health issues, according to the Swedish authorities.

United States

In the US, many states are undertaking both regulatory and non-regulatory activities to ensure proper management of mercury-containing dental amalgam.[96]

In the United States, amalgams are classified as a "device," not a "substance," by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Under the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, amalgams are a prosthetic device:

Amalgam Alloy, (a) Identification. An amalgam alloy is a device that consists of a metallic substance intended to be mixed with mercury to form filling material for treatment of dental caries. (b) Classification. Class II. (21 CFR 872.3050 (2001))

On July 28, 2009, FDA issued a final rule that: (1) reclassified mercury from a class I (least risk) device to class II (more risk) device; (2) classified dental amalgam as a class II device; and (3) designated a special controls guidance document for dental amalgam.[97]

The special controls guidance document recommends specific labelling, including an Information for Use statement "Dental amalgam has been demonstrated to be an effective restorative material that has benefits in terms of strength, marginal integrity, suitability for large occlusal surfaces, and durability. Dental amalgam also releases low levels of mercury vapor, a chemical that at high exposure levels is well documented to cause neurological and renal adverse health effects." [97]

In 2001 in a lawsuit involving California Proposition 65 and amalgams, a California Superior Court judge ruled that all dental offices with more than nine employees must provide notices on the contents of dental fillings. The mandated notice reads:

Notice to Patients, Proposition 65: Warning on dental amalgams, used in many dental fillings, causes exposure to mercury, a chemical known to the state of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. Root canal treatments and restorations including fillings, crowns and bridges, use chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has studied the situation and approved for use all dental restorative materials. Consult your dentist to determine which materials are appropriate for your treatment.

Following the meeting of the joint committees on 6–7 September 2006, when the panel of outside advisers that the FDA had asked to assess the conclusions of its report on amalgam safety rejected the FDA report in a 13-7 vote, they stated the report's conclusions were "unreasonable", given the quantity and quality of information currently available. Panelists said remaining uncertainties about the risk of so-called silver fillings demanded further research, in particular, on the effects of mercury-laden fillings on children and the fetuses of pregnant women with fillings and the release of mercury vapor on insertion and removal of mercury fillings. Michael Aschner, a professor of pediatrics and pharmacology at Vanderbilt University and a panel consultant said "There are too many things we don't know, too many things that were excluded."[98][99][100]

Shortly after the decision of the joint advisory panel, the president of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT) wrote to the FDA to ask for an expanded review of current science on dental amalgams, a definitive date for such a hearing, and a format that will assure that the full breadth of health effects is assessed.[101] In a press release the ADA wrote that it " welcomes the call by a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) panel for additional review of scientific studies on the safety of dental amalgam fillings." and reiterated that "the overwhelming weight of scientific evidence supports the safety and efficacy of dental amalgam, and it should continue to be made available to dentists and their patients " and " dental amalgam contains elemental mercury combined with other metals such as silver, copper, tin and zinc to form a safe, stable alloy."

'There is a cover-up of the health hazards of dental mercury and a failure by regulators who are responsible for protecting the public health. There are likely multiple reasons for the cover-up. For one, perhaps the ADA feels that, since it has defended and promoted the use of mercury amalgam fillings throughout its entire history, it could not survive if it were to admit that it has been wrong over the last century and a half, misinforming and harming millions of people. It could not survive an admission that it has lied to its own member dentists and harmed them by the cover-up. Our media makes the cover-up possible, to a large extent, and is complicit. So, as with most cover-ups, it is not just a creation of an industry and the corrupt governmental agencies that are supposed to regulate the industry; the cover-up is also a creature of the media, a media largely controlled by and created by the most powerful corporations.

Amalgams have been banned in Norway, Sweden and Denmark so it is possible for more responsive governments to halt them. Unfortunately, in the USA the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) dental division appears to be captured by the ADA, and steadfastly maintains the amalgam cover-up, no matter how much damning the scientific evidence science is.' http://www.dams.cc/

http://www.change.org/petitions/children...

'W.H.O. Withdraws Petersen Paper
Chiba, Japan, 24 January 2014

Charlie Brown, reporting from Chiba (Japan)

The W.H.O. has withdrawn the notorious Petersen Paper, a propaganda project of its in-house dentist to claim that phasing out amalgam is not feasible and that amalgam is a safe product.

After a constructive meeting of many amalgam stakeholders in 2009, where an agreement was reached to "phase down" amalgam, WHO dentist P E Petersen was assigned to write up the notes. Instead, Petersen secretly assembled three other pro-mercury dentists, all from developed countries, and produced a paper denying progress could be made on amalgam and making a series of provably false claims about amalgam and about the progress of that stakeholder meeting.

After those attending the meeting proved that the Petersen Paper in no way reflected what occurred there, a world uproar ensued, led by leaders of the World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry. The United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) showed great integrity, insisting that the Petersen Paper be withdrawn or else all reference to UNEP removed. Upon my written request, WHO's Assistant Director-General, Dr Ala Alwan, agreed to investigate the Petersen Paper, and to his credit, had the paper withdrawn.

It is being rewritten, and -- nota bene, my friends -- all claims that amalgam is safe are being withdrawn! Likewise, all participants in the meeting are being asked to comment on the paper before it will be issued again. The new report of the stakeholder meeting of 2009 will likely be an honest project, and devoid of propaganda favoring Petersen ally the World Dental Federation.

Our movement for mercury-free dentistry has achieved a stunning victory.

Charlie Brown, President, World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry'

http://www.dentistryforsandiego.com/news...

I would say that there is overwhelming evidence to suggest Mercury is poisonous and highly toxic wherever and whenever it is used and manufactured.

You need to reassess your data sources. If chronic ill health is not being recorded then how in hells name do you know how many humans have been affected by this nasty, monstrous substance?

The DOH and NHS are in my view act dishonestly when we (the public)and myself are told it is safe when it is far from it. You only need look to find there are serious international and public concerns about the use and manufacture of Mercury in all it's forms, including but not limited to Mercury Amalgam.

Thank you for your time

Granito

Department of Health

Our ref: DE00000860824 

Dear Granito,  

Thank you for your further correspondence of 12 May about mercury in
amalgam fillings.  I have been asked to reply.

I note your continuing concerns about this matter.  However, the
Department of Health has explained in its previous correspondence why
ministers consider mercury amalgam to provide a safe, efficient material
for dental restorations.
 
Although the Department is participating in initiatives led by the
European Commission (EC) to reduce the extent of mercury within the
environment, the levels of mercury ingested by eating some foods are much
higher than any levels of mercury vapour released during the placement of
amalgam fillings.  For humans, the main cause of exposure to organic forms
of mercury is thought to be by consumption of methylmercury-contaminated
fish, particularly predatory species.  It has been estimated that the
daily intake of all forms of mercury from fish and seafood is 2.3ng per
day, while other sources such as other foods, air and water only
contribute a further 0.3ng.

Given that the level of exposure from dental treatment is very low
compared to environmental exposure and is declining as a result of
improvements in oral health, ministers do not consider that banning the
use of amalgam is justified.

Ministers understand that Norway and Sweden have banned amalgam on
environmental and not on dental or personal health grounds.  Measures to
limit the environmental health impact from amalgam have already been taken
in this country.  The Hazardous Waste Regulations 2005 required the use of
amalgam separators in dental practices to ensure that amal! gam did not
enter the sewerage system.  It will remain the Department’s policy to
ensure that amalgam waste is disposed of safely and that other
restrictions on the storage and disposal of mercury are observed in
accordance with EC agreements.

I hope this reply is helpful.
 
Yours sincerely,
 
Paul Swiderski
Ministerial Correspondence and Public Enquiries
Department of Health
 

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FreedomofInformation, Department of Health

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Dear Madam,

 

Please see attached the Department of Health’s response to your Internal
Review request (Our reference number: IR843237).

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Jamie Scott

Senior Casework Officer

Freedom of Information Team

Department of Health

 

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Dear Jamie Scott,

In the light of the Minamata Treaty and current medical and scientific findings and data the DOH are deliberatly misleading me and the public. The Department Of Health (or ill health) is not providing WHO (World Health Organization)or any other agency such as the Cochran Library, which informs government departments and agencies, with any data whatsoever to determine what health impacts mercury amalgam causes and certainly not for chronic exposure. You are incorrect about levels of methyl mercury and the effects of elemental mercury. You have a duty of care to provide evidence and proof that mercury in whatever form is safe, which it clearly is not. Hence a world wide ban. Whatever you look at it it ends up harming human life and health. The response from the DOH is tragically and irresponsibly lacking. By it's own admittance absolutely no data exists for anybody to know the true number of men, women and children who are being poisoned by this lethal toxic material.

When is the UK government going to ratify the Minamata Treaty and what measures is it taking to fully implement it?

“An understanding of the events that have shaped the last decade are predicated not such so much on acts to be learned but secrets to be discovered”

The objective of the Minamata Convention on Mercury is “to protect the human health and the environment from anthropogenic releases of mercury and mercury compounds” (Article 1).

The new treaty is an important step forward in the control of mercury pollution worldwide and represents a global consensus that mercury pollution is a serious threat to human health and the environment, and that action is needed to minimize and eliminate mercury emissions and releases in order to reduce that threat. The treaty also progresses the ambit of international chemical conventions in that it specifically provides for and highlights the need to protect human health, a provision that is often absent in other chemical treaties.

Significantly, this treaty includes a specific article related to human health (Article 16) with measures and activities that can be undertaken to assess and protect human health from mercury. It outlines an important requirement that information related to mercury and human health must not be kept confidential thereby underscoring the public Right To Know about mercury impacts on their health.

A new lawsuit claims that despite growing evidence of harm caused by dental amalgam, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to delay the protection of public health against mercury tooth fillings.
The case has a number of plaintiffs, including the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology, which claim that the FDA has failed to respond within a reasonable time to petitions calling for either a formal ban of dental amalgam use, or placement in FDA's Class III, which requires: 1) additional restrictions for vulnerable individuals; 2) more stringent proof of safety; and 3) an Environmental Impact Statement.
According to attorney James M. Love, who filed the lawsuit on March 5, 2014, American consumers and dental professionals are being misled by the American Dental Association (ADA) the largest and most powerful advocate for continued amalgam use.

"The ADA has misrepresented FDA's lack of regulation as proof of safety, and continues to use this toxic dental filling, despite scientifically demonstrated risks," said Love. "Most individuals remain unaware that those 'silver' fillings, prevalently used as a dental restoration and covered by insurance policies, consist of 45-55% metallic mercury, and that there are health and environmental risks associated with those fillings."

Top scientists have repeatedly warned the FDA of the risk of harm caused by dental fillings, the lawsuit notes. For example, a February 2014 study, "[n]ew science challenges old notion that mercury dental amalgam is safe," published in the peer-reviewed journal, Biometals, uses the same studies cited by FDA in 2006, demonstrating that children are particularly at risk for mercury poisoning. The lawsuit suggests that the largest user of dental amalgam is the U.S. government, which uses amalgam for welfare recipients, prisoners, those residing on Indian Reservations, and the military, serving largely low-income people, including women and children, who are given no other options.

http://www.sott.net/article/275145-Lawsu...
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007...

‘Progress in research has therefore made it clear that the RfD and the PTWI for methyl mercury are no longer valid definitions of “safe” exposure. They provide no margin at all below harmful doses, and do not protect public health. In fact, new research has often led to downward revision of environmental health criteria, and it seems evident that the time has come to update official definitions of tolerable methyl mercury exposure, to better align them with currently available epidemiological evidence.’

An Overview of Epidemiological Evidence on the Effects of Methyl mercury on Brain Development, and A Rationale for a Lower Definition of Tolerable Exposure Groth report 2012

WHO figures estimate that 6% of all global injuries were caused by poisoning. One third of these injuries occurred in Europe and involved
young adults and children suggesting accidental poisoning played a significant role. As such poisoning was preventable and poisons centres had an important role to play. While use of human observational data was a long-standing part of risk assessment practices, some sources of data remained under-utilized. Poisons centre data was one of many sources which had not been sufficiently explored in the past, others included injury data and data from biological monitoring. http://www.who.int/ipcs/publications/met...

In January 2013, governments from 140 countries agreed on final text for a global treaty on mercury, the first global treaty on the environment in well over a decade. The Treaty was then adopted in October 2013, and named the Minamata Convention. This Treaty reflects a global consensus that mercury poses a serious threat to human health and the environment, and applies pressure to eliminate mercury use from the global economy.

The related health clause under Article 17 which concludes, “For the purposes of this Convention, information on the health and safety of humans and the environment shall not be regarded as confidential” may provide leverage for those who wish to seek information from government on known sources and impacts of mercury on men, women and children in the UK. Information that has previously been classified may be released and publicised, raising awareness about mercury pollution in communities.

The hazards associated with mercury added products cannot be underestimated. The potential for mercury to be released at every stage from manufacture through useful life and disposal phase means that the potential for exposure during daily use of these products is high.

In 1833 the Crawcour brothers, two Frenchmen, brought amalgam to the United States, and in 1844 it was reported that fifty percent of all dental restorations placed in upstate New York consisted of amalgam. However, at that point the use of dental amalgam was declared to be malpractice, and the American Society of Dental Surgeons (ASDS), the only US dental association at the time, forced all of its members to sign a pledge to abstain from using the mercury fillings. This was the beginning of what is known as the first dental amalgam war. The dispute ended in 1856 with the disbanding of the old association. The American Dental Association (ADA) was founded in its place in 1859, which has since then strongly defended dental amalgam from allegations of being too risky from the health standpoint. The ratio of the mercury to the remaining metallic mixture in dental amalgam has not always been 50:50. It was as high as 66:33 in 1930. Relative ratios between the other metals used in dental amalgams has also been highly variable.

Conventional (or gamma 2)-amalgams have 32% silver and 14% tin, and they are most susceptible to corrosion due to their low copper content. Non-gamma-2 dental amalgams have been developed that were, however, found to release higher levels of mercury vapour compared with traditional amalgams. Amalgam is the dental material that has the strongest tendency to create galvanic currents and high electric potentials as it ages. The rate of mercury release with the corrosion is accelerated when the amalgam filling is in contact with old restorations or coupled with gold artefacts present in the mouth. (both of which apply to me)

In 2008, Sweden, Norway and Denmark deliberated a ban of mercury dental amalgam in favour of composite fillings. Since 1 April 2008, dentists in Denmark are forbidden to use mercury in fillings. The Swedish amalgam ban is for both environmental and health issues, according to the Swedish authorities.

What is most disturbing is that the UK government already have the data and know about the hazards of mercury added products and their cost to society in terms of human health impacts and environmental damage but we have yet to see the Minamata Treaty ratified and implemented. The UK government went against it’s own regulators in 2009, after they lobbied to stop it’s widespread use. Mercury and its compounds are highly toxic to humans, especially to the developing nervous system. They are also harmful to ecosystems and wildlife populations. Microbial metabolism of deposited mercury can create methyl mercury, which has the capacity to collect in organisms (bio-accumulate) and to concentrate up food chains (biomagnify), especially in the aquatic food chain. Methyl mercury is a well documented neuro-toxicant, which may in particular cause adverse effects on the developing brain. It readily passes both the placental barrier and the blood-brain barrier, therefore, exposures during pregnancy are of highest concern. It may also cause adverse effects on the cardiovascular system, thereby leading to increased mortality. Methyl mercury compounds are considered possible carcinogenic to humans according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Furthermore, inhalation of elemental mercury vapour includes symptoms such as tremors, insomnia, memory loss, neuromuscular changes, and headaches. Kidney and thyroid may be affected. http://www.zeromercury.org/

A product to be “phased-down” is dental amalgam. The mercury treaty clearly identifies the products that contain mercury. Many are scheduled for phase-down and phase-out and some are exempt. A progressive form of treatment known as Atraumatic Restorative Treatment (ART) has proven to be very effective for basic caries. ART is endorsed by the World Health Organization and used in 25 countries.

“A number of EU member states have also signed a new global treaty in 2013, the Minamata Convention on Mercury, added Attorney Edith Bon of Paris, European Union Counsel for the World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry also. “It is now time for the Commission to act on this.”

The main alternative to amalgam in Europe is composites. This final opinion, also confirms that in contrast to amalgam, any adverse environmental impact of composites is "very limited."

Dr. Bent Christiansen, a dentist from Denmark’s Jutland, said “Amalgam alternatives are now used in the overwhelming majority of cases. From a dentist’s perspective, the alternatives are plainly superior to amalgam, which requires invasive removal of good tooth matter. By contrast, alternatives are minimally invasive. No earthly reason exists for using amalgam for any kind of cavity in a child or adult.”

Mercury is a highly neurotoxic product which can cause brain damage or even death to children and foetuses. Dental amalgam is about 50% mercury. Its use has increasingly been discredited, and it is virtually forbidden in Scandinavian nations.

the World Health Organization has collectively defined these conditions as “idiopathic environmental intolerances”(IEI), namely multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), fibromyalgia (FM), chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), dental amalgam disease, and others, among which the intolerances to microbial and environmental allergens or toxins, drugs, vaccines, specific foods, synthetic implants, and possibly new biomaterials are also included. In view of the progressively increasing knowledge and awareness regarding these diseases, they are presently better described collectively as “sensitivity-related illnesses” (SRI).

SRI symptoms appear mainly in adult life, with higher prevalence in women, although a growing number of paediatric cases has been recently registered, and evidences are accumulating for a role of in-uteri sensitization . For the prototypical MCS, the disease onset is commonly self-reported as a single precipitating event following a severe intoxication, or as a chronic exposure to lower doses of an environmental pollutant , either in the occupational or in the domestic setting.

Then, the intolerance becomes chronic, with symptoms elicited by the same incident, but also by different, multiple incidents, resolving at their removal. Challenges for establishing differential diagnostic criteria for various SRI lie in: (i) the absence of consensus on case definition in all SRI conditions, with the exception of FM; (ii) the wide variety of multi-organ symptoms, including psychosomatic, neurological, memory loss, mood disorders, post-traumatic distress, chronic fatigue, muscular, chronic bronchitis and asthma, eye-nose-throat, gastro- intestinal, cardiac, autoimmune disorders.

Governments have recognized that mercury poses a global threat to human health and the environment. IAOMT petitioned the World Health Organisation to consider banning mercury. In 2006, the FDA consulted a Joint Panel of physicians and dentists to review the FDA’s own White Paper on dental amalgam. The Panel ruled 13 to 7 that the White Paper did not demonstrate adequate proof of safety. In 2009, in their position statement, the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT) stated, “[i]t is incompatible with current, valid scientific evidence to continue to endorse or otherwise condone the use of a permanently implanted material in teeth that continuously emits a very potent enzyme inhibitor and metabolic toxin.”

In 2010, at the urging of its own scientific advisory panel, the FDA agreed to review its amalgam rule based on current science.

The agency announced its intention to complete its review by 2011, but still has not acted. A February 2014 study, “[n]ew science challenges old notion that mercury dental amalgam is safe,” published in the peer-reviewed journal, Biometals, uses the same studies cited by FDA in 2006, demonstrating that children are particularly at risk for mercury poisoning. A 2013 study, “Woods et. al. 2013 – Neurobehavioral Data From CATs Reveals Greater Hg Effects In Boys With Metallothionein Gene Variant,” demonstrates that certain genetic factors make young boys more susceptible to adverse neurobehavioral effects from mercury.

Mercury is a persistent toxic chemical that can build up in the body. It is particularly toxic to the kidneys and the nervous system. Young children are more sensitive to mercury and are exposed to mercury through breast milk. The foetus is exposed to mercury from placental transfer of mercury from a pregnant woman’s teeth containing amalgam. “We have banned mercury in disinfectants, thermometers, and many other consumer products,” said Griffin Cole, DDS, President of the IAOMT.

“There is no magic formula that makes mercury safe when it’s put into our mouths. It’s inexcusable to use mercury in dental fillings when there are much safer alternatives.” A previous 2007 lawsuit, Moms Against Mercury v. Eschenbach, alleged that more than thirty years ago the FDA was legally obligated to classify dental amalgam, but did not do so. In direct response to this lawsuit, the FDA agreed to classify dental amalgam. However, FDA classified the device in Class II, assigning no controls or other measures intended to protect the public. http://iaomt.org/lawsuit-filed-today-fda...

Plaintiffs in the current lawsuit include: International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology, Moms Against Mercury, DAMS, Inc., CoMeD, Inc., and several individuals who were adversely affected by the mercury from amalgam fillings. Plaintiffs submitted their first petitions in July 2009, which initially precipitated much promising activity, but have since been ignored by FDA.

This lawsuit culminates the allegations set forth in the previous five petitions submitted to FDA. In 1991 and 2003, the World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed that dental amalgam is the greatest source of human exposure to mercury in the general population, and in 2005, a WHO report listed adverse health effects caused by mercury exposure, cautioning, “Recent studies suggest that mercury may have no threshold below which some adverse effects do not occur.”

On its dental amalgam webpage in 2008, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned about dental mercury’s potential neurotoxic effects on children and foetuses, but later removed the warning without explanation. Later, at a 2010 FDA Dental Products Panel meeting to discuss the health impacts of mercury amalgam fillings, Dr. Suresh Kotagal, a paediatric neurologist at the Mayo Clinic, concluded, “…I think that there is really no place for mercury in children.” The global burden of diseases attributed to exposure to hazardous chemicals is already significant and is likely to become more serious. Infants, children and pregnant women are the most vulnerable to the health effects of mercury. The same FDA Panel encouraged consideration for limiting dental mercury for pregnant women and children, as well as labelling to warn consumers of the mercury risks. The public was told that FDA’s ruling on the issue would be made by December 31, 2011. However, no action has been taken to date.

Amalgam risk assessments conducted in 1995, 2010, and 2012 by Dr. G. Mark Richardson, an expert to the European Union’s Scientific Committee on Health and Environmental Risks (SCHER), revealed that toxic levels of mercury were released from dental fillings. Other risk assessments confirm these findings. Additional “credible” scientific research released in 2012 includes a Yale University study substantiating occupational dental mercury exposure, two studies corroborating the harmful impacts of mercury fillings on children and adolescents, and a study demonstrating that maternal amalgam fillings release mercury into breast milk.

Opponents to the ADA’s position on mercury fillings cite a 1995 legal brief filed by ADA attorneys asserting, “The ADA owes no legal duty of care to protect the public from allegedly dangerous products used by dentists. The ADA did not manufacture, design, supply or install the mercury-containing amalgams.” Similarly, last year, the ADA lobbied the U.S. Department of State to oppose a ban or limit on the use of amalgam fillings in connection with the United Nations Environment Programme’s legally-binding mercury treaty. However, the treaty text agreed upon in January includes the global phase-down of dental mercury fillings. Dr. William Virtue, DDS, President of the IAOMT, is concerned.

“While worldwide action is being taken to protect humans and the environment from mercury, the ADA continues to mislead the public into believing that one of the most toxic elements on this planet somehow becomes less poisonous when it is placed in their mouths.”

Yours sincerely,

Granito

Dear Department of Health,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department of Health's handling of my FOI request 'Mercury amalgam used by the NHS in 1996 as a restorative material in dental surgical procedures.'.

[ lack of transparency and misleading me [the public] ]

Significantly, this treaty includes a specific article related to human health (Article 16) with measures and activities that can be undertaken to assess and protect human health from mercury. It outlines an important requirement that information related to mercury and human health must not be kept confidential thereby underscoring the public Right To Know about mercury impacts on their health.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

Yours faithfully,

Granito

FreedomofInformation, Department of Health

Dear Madam,

Thank you for email of 12/06/2014.

The Department has already conducted an Internal Review of your initial Freedom of Information request. As advised in our previous reply, if you are still unhappy with the Department's handling of your request, you will need to apply directly to the ICO. Details on how to do so are as follows:

The Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

As your second email relates solely to policy matters, rather than access to specific recorded information, I have forwarded it to the Department's public correspondence unit, who will reply in due course.

Yours sincerely,

Jamie Scott

Senior Casework Officer
Freedom of Information Team
Department of Health

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Incoming and outgoing e-mail messages are routinely monitored for compliance with the Department of Health's policy on the use of electronic communications. For more information on the Department of Health's e-mail policy click here http://www.dh.gov.uk/terms
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Dear FreedomofInformation,

The problem is there is NO public access to specific recorded information and NO recorded public information whatsoever to access.The DOH are misleading me [the public] and deliberately denying vital data for the National Poisons Centre and other international agencies such as the World Health Organization and HSE and MRHR.

By their own admission data on chronic health effects of mercury amalgam is not available. GPs are not making diagnosis's and therefore men, women and children are not getting treatment.

Why is there no national register to provide vital and important data to the relevant agencies?

You are incorrect my concerns are NOT 'solely to policy matters, rather than access to specific recorded information' because the 'specific recorded information' is not being recorded and that is my point.

thank you for your time

Granito

Peter Bowyer left an annotation ()

If you acknowledge that the DH is correct in its assertion that there's no recorded information, which you seem to do, then you've reached the end of the line as far as FoI is concerned - time to stop wasting time on it. Nothing in the FoI Act obliges an authority to start recording information it doesn't already have recorded, nor to change its policies relating to what it records.

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Department of Health

Thank you for contacting the Department of Health.
This is an acknowledgement - please do not reply to this email.
Where a reply is appropriate, we aim to send one within 18 working days,
or 20 working days if your query is a Freedom of Information request or
complaint.
If you have contacted the Department of Health about a current health or
social care campaign, please visit the [1]GOV.UK website, the UK
Government’s official information website, where a response may have been
published.

If your enquiry is about a medical matter, please contact NHS 111 or visit
[2]NHS Choices, or contact your GP surgery.

For general health information you may also find it helpful to refer to
[3]GOV.UK, which includes the Department of Health's [4]'What we
do' section.
Please note that the Department of Health does not process complaints
about the NHS or social services. If you wish to make a complaint about a
healthcare professional, an NHS organisation or a social care provider,
please visit the [5]'Complaints procedure' page on the GOV.UK website.
 
You can find out more about the Department’s commitments from our
[6]Personal Information Charter.

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