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News Americas

Anita Vazquez Tibau (left) delivered a statement on mercury-free dentistry at the subregional meeting on the Minamata Convention on Mercury in Brazil. (Photograph courtesy of Anita Vazquez Tibau)
0 Comments Sep 17, 2014 | News Americas

Subregional meeting of Minamata Convention on Mercury held in Brazil

Post a comment by Anita Vazquez Tibau, international advocate against the use of mercury in dentistry

The recently held subregional meeting on the Minamata Convention on Mercury in Brasilia was an opportunity for the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT) to give a global update on mercury in dentistry. The IAOMT discussed the substantial progress Brazil has made in its serious commitment to mercury-free dentistry and shared the positive experience of the Technical Assistance Programme (TAP), which was established as a direct result of the Minamata Convention.

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Anita Vazquez Tibau Anita Vazquez Tibau

Less than a year after the TAP was launched in Rio de Janeiro last October, Dr. Aspásia Camargo and Anthony Garotinho, both of whom represent Rio de Janeiro, have introduced legislation that would eliminate the use of mercury in products and processes, including dental mercury. It was also noted that, during her tenure, Marina Silva, former Minister of the Environment in Brazil, drafted Motion 85 of 2007, which addresses products and processes using mercury, its dangers and the need to eliminate its use, including eliminating mercury in the dental industry.

The IAOMT chose Brazil for its pilot project because it is an important emerging economy, and has more dental schools and graduates, and more dental professionals than any other country, other than India. The academy also wanted to pay homage to the forefather of mercury-free dentistry, Dr. Olympio Faissol Pinto from Rio de Janeiro, who has been actively working on a global ban on the use of mercury in the dental industry for more than a half a century.

The IAOMT will be holding three free two-day TAP workshops in Brazil: Nov. 4–5 in Brasilia; Nov. 10–11 in Rio de Janeiro; and Nov. 13–14 in São Paulo. The organization will also be holding a one-day workshop at the Universidade Federal Fluminense in Nova Friburgo. These workshops are sponsored by the IAOMT, IAOMT Brazilian Chapter, International Academy of Biological Dentistry and Medicine, Conselho Federal de Odontologia (federal council of dentistry), Conselho Regional de Odontologia do Distrito Federal (regional council of dentistry of the federal district) São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Associação Brasileira de Odontologia de seção Rio de Janeiro, (Brazilian dental association), Associação Médica de Brasília (medical association of Brasilia), and Associação Paulista de Cirurgiões-Dentistas (Paulista association of dental surgeons).

As part of its international commitment to assist all countries to rapidly eliminate the use of mercury in the dental industry in a safe and conscientious manner, the IAOMT has invited representatives of all Latin American countries to attend the upcoming workshops.


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