FDI World Dental Federation and COP-5 align on making mercury history

Australian Dental Association
17 November 2023
5 min read
Oral health

The Fifth Conference of Parties to the Minamata Convention on Mercury (COP-5) has voted to uphold the nine provisions of phase-down of dental amalgam which the FDI World Dental Federation (FDI), of which the ADA is a full and active member, fully supports as a means of safeguarding "the oral health of populations globally [and protecting] "the evidence-based approach to identifying alternatives to dental amalgam."

The specific proposal under review by COP-5, which took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from 30 October to 3 November 2023, sought to amend parts I and II of Annex A of Article 4 of the the Minamata Convention on Mercury.

The proposal, submitted by Botswana and Burkina Faso, had two elements:

1.    That Parties that have not phased-out dental amalgam should submit a national action plan on their efforts to do so.

2.    It also asked Parties to exclude the use of dental amalgam in government insurance policies and programmes.

Prior to the COP-5 meeting FDI, in concert with the International Association for Dental, Oral, and Craniofacial Research (IADR), submitted an official response to the COP5 Secretariat with the two organisations jointly participating in the event and delivering a statement on the importance of the phase-down approach.

FDI, and by extension the ADA because of its membership of the World Dental Federation, will continue its advocacy on this issue, highlighting "the importance of ensuring access to restorative materials as all stakeholders work together to identity mercury-free alternatives with similar clinical longevity under different clinical conditions, safety, and cost-effectiveness."

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