Keokuk lands $25,000 grant for fluoride upgrades | Daily Gate City
The City of Keokuk will upgrade its community water fluoridation equipment thanks in part to a $25,000 grant from the Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation. Community water fluoridation is the adjustment, up or down, of natural fluoride levels in water systems to prevent tooth decay (cavities). According to the Iowa Department of Public Health, water fluoridation prevents 25 percent of tooth decay for all age groups and for every $1 spent on community water fluoridation, $38 is saved in dental treatment costs.
“Research shows that assisting communities like Keokuk with fluoridation is an important and effective strategy for overall public health,” said Dr. Jeffrey Chaffin, chief dental officer, Delta Dental of Iowa and board director, Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation. “Fluoridation programs were identified as one of the top 10 public health achievements of the 20th century, and communities like Keokuk continue to improve the oral and overall health of residents by making investments like this.”
These system upgrades will enable Keokuk Municipal Waterworks to convert from a solid fluoride feed to a liquid fluoride feed, improving process control and maintaining this equitable and effective method for cavity prevention. Keokuk’s water system serves a population of 9,900 in Lee County. It is estimated that there are 2,130 people per dentist in the county.
Keokuk Municipal Waterworks General Manager David Bogner said the Keokuk Waterworks decided a couple of years ago to convert from dry to liquid fluoride to remove a potential employee health hazard from our operation.
“The move to liquid also improves the availability of fluoride in a difficult market and allows us to more consistently control our fluoride addition. Delta Dental’s grant is a nice contribution to this project and we appreciate their commitment to employee safety and oral health in our community,” Bogner said.
“The health and safety of Keokuk residents and our employees are of utmost importance to our community and this grant helps us make these necessary system upgrades,” said Mayor KA Mahoney, City of Keokuk. “I fully support our Waterworks team to maintain and improve the delivery of quality water to our residents and fluoride delivery is a big part of that.”
Working with the Iowa Department of Public Health, Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation provides funding to maintain and support optimally fluoridated water in public water systems. This program can help Iowans of all ages receive a health benefit that helps prevent cavities. If you are wondering about your community, visit My Water’s Fluoride, a voluntary nationwide database hosted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that reports each community and water system’s fluoride levels.