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MPs Say Mercury Fillings Should Not Be Banned Or Phased Out

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Sept 4 NZPA - Mercury fillings should not be banned or phased out, a parliamentary committee said today.

The health select committee has been considering a petition from Juliet Pratt, of Auckland, who called for mercury amalgam fillings to be banned.

She questioned why the Ministry of Health believed the only safe place to store mercury was in the mouths of children.

Mrs Pratt said she had suffered chronic fatigue syndrome and it wasn't until she had her mercury amalgam fillings removed that she regained her health.

The committee said after hearing evidence the majority of MPs did not believe the Mrs Pratt's case had been proven or that mercury fillings had significant health effects.

"We do not agree that it should be banned or its use phased out... we do not agree that Government funding should be provided for removing dental amalgam," the committee said.

The report pointed to a recent Unites State's Food and Drug Administration ruling that said after an extensive review, dental amalgam had not been shown to cause mercury poisoning.

The committee recommended the Health Ministry continue to; review the scientific evidence of amalgam, the availability of cost-effective diagnostic testing for mercury allergy and on viable alternative filling material.

The Green Party filed a minority report urging the Government to take a more precautionary approach and stop the use of mercury amalgam on children and others who could be sensitive to mercury vapour.

It called on other filling alternatives to be used because it was odd that mercury was considered a highly toxic metal everywhere but in a person's mouth.

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