March 21, 1995
PUBLIC WATER SYSTEMS RECOGNIZED FOR MAINTAINING FLUORIDE LEVELS
SPRINGFIELD, IL -- The administrators of 110 public water systems have been recognized for maintaining required levels of fluoride last year in their drinking water. Thirteen have earned this commendation for at least five consecutive years and five for at least 10 consecutive years.
"When the fluoride levels in public water supplies meet state standards, the citizens of these communities benefit through improved oral health," said Dr. John R. Lumpkin, state health director. "Studies have shown for every dollar spent on fluoridation, as much as $56 is saved in dental care costs."
The average annual cost of fluoridating a community water supply is 20 to 30 cents per person.
Illinois continues to maintain required fluoride levels for 95 percent of those served by public water systems, far exceeding the national goal by the year 2000 of at least 75 percent. The current national average is 62 percent.
Each year the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) recognize communities that continually meet state fluoride standards.
Mary Gade, IEPA director, said, "My agency joins the Department of Public Health in congratulating water supply operators for their diligence in maintaining optimum fluoride levels for the benefit of the public's health."
Another 127 communities received honorable mention for reaching standards 11 of 12 months during 1994.
There are 1,830 public water supplies in Illinois. In many communities, the fluoride levels fluctuate and do not always meet the required standards. Communities are required to send water samples to a certified lab on a monthly basis to monitor the fluoride levels.
of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
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