Innovations: New community water fluoridation system is ‘game-changer,’ advocates say
December 21, 2020
Editor’s note: The “Innovations” series highlights and features leaps forward in science-based technology that can provide benefits to dentists, their patients and the public.
Innovation: The new sodium fluorosilicate tablet system is shown.
— A new community water fluoridation system that is the first advancement in water fluoridation technology in decades has received a coveted approval that primes it for immediate deployment all over the country.
The sodium fluorosilicate tablet system, developed by Florida-based KC Industries and contracted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, received NSF Standard 61 approval in December.
NSF Standard 61 is a set of national standards that relates to water treatment and was developed by the National Sanitation Foundation, a global independent public health and environmental organization.
The tablet system is a more cost-effective way to distribute fluoride into drinking water, and offers an opportunity to distribute fluoride to smaller communities that did not have the previous infrastructure to do so, said Kip Duchon, a consultant to the ADA’s National Fluoridation Advisory Committee and retired CDC national fluoridation engineer.
“It’s a game-changer,” Mr. Duchon said. He said that at the moment, about 75% of the country has fluoridated water. He predicted that within a decade, that number will rise to 85% due to the new system.
The system is designed for small- to medium-sized water systems with flow rates of up to 1 million gallons per day, which serves up to about 15,000 people, said Steve McCarter, managing member of KC Industries. More than a decade in the making, the system is designed to be a safe, easy-to-use, low-maintenance and affordable option for smaller municipalities to access the benefits of water fluoridation for their residents.
The feeder system works through the erosion of sodium fluorosilicate tablets in the patented New Wave Fluoridation Feeder, much like how chlorine is distributed into swimming pools, Mr. McCarter said.
The New Wave Fluoridation Feeder and Tablet system will be marketed by DuBois Chemicals throughout North America commencing Jan. 1, 2021.
KC Industries has a long history in the application and use of fluoride products for use in water fluoridation, as both a producer and distributor, and Dubois is one of the largest water fluoridation companies in North America, with over 75 years of combined experience in water fluoridation sales and technical staff.
Mr. McCarter said interest in the system has come from around the world — including Australia — and that he expects to be implementing the system soon in communities that include those in Colorado and Georgia.
Mr. Duchon expects a half-dozen communities to implement the system within the first few months.
Jayanth Kumar, D.D.S., California state dental director and member of the National Fluoridation Advisory Committee, said he was pleased to see the approval and deployment of the New Wave Fluoridation Feeder and Tablet system throughout the nation.
“This system will expand the benefits of community water fluoridation to many more communities that before were unable to offer community water fluoridation to its residents,” Dr. Kumar said. “Community water fluoridation is one of the best population-based interventions.”
For more information on community water fluoridation and ADA advocacy, visit ADA.org/fluoride