Town of Prentiss receives national award

Published 10:45 am Monday, December 23, 2013

The Mississippi Department of Health announced today that the Town of Prentiss has been awarded a Water Fluoridation Quality Award from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Fluoridation is the adjustment of fluoride in drinking water to a level that is effective for preventing tooth decay. The award recognizes those communities that achieved excellence in community water fluoridation by maintaining a consistent level of fluoridated water throughout 2012.

“It’s really special to be recognized with an award from a national organization such as the CDC,” said Mayor Charley Dumas. “Maintaining a viable water system is a high priority for us, and we’ve consistently scored perfect or high on yearly tests done by the state. Safe drinking water cannot be taken for granted.”

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For 2012, a total of 1791 public water systems in 34 states received these awards including thirty-five (35) in the State of Mississippi.

“Community water fluoridation is one of the most effective ways that communities can use to prevent tooth decay in children and adults,” stated Dr. Katherine Weno, DDS, JD, director, CDC Division of Oral Health. “Our current research shows that people living in fluoridated communities have about 25% fewer cavities. We continue to increase the number of states that use WFRS as a tool to manage the quality of their water fluoridation programs.”

Community water fluoridation has been recognized by the CDC as one of the 10 greatest health achievements of the 20th Century. Currently, nearly three-quarters (73.9 percent – or 204 million people) served by community water systems have access to optimally fluoridated tap water. CDC recommends water fluoridation as a safe, effective, and inexpensive method of preventing decay. In fact, every $1 invested in fluoridation saves at least $38 in costs for dental treatment.