On Tuesday 10th April 2001 from 1-3PM, Dr. Roger Masters, Dr.
Mike Coplan and myself met with the following individuals from
the State of Maryland in Baltimore:
Maureen C. Edwards, MD, MPH, Medical Director, Center for Maternal & Child Health, Maryland Department of Health & Mental Hygiene
Bonnie S. Birkel, CRNP, MPH, Director, Center for Maternal and Child Health, Community and Public Health Administration, Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
There were about 5 other state employees there, one an epidemiologist, one from the Department of the Environment, and a few from the water treatment area. I don't have the specifics on them at the moment.
This meeting occurred because I stood up at the end of a speech by the Lieutenant Governor, Ms. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, one night in Easton, Maryland, and told her that there was new scientific information that fluoridation chemicals were raising lead levels in children and increasing violent crime. I asked her how to go about getting the health department of the state of Maryland to listen. She said call my office Monday morning and I will see that you get your meeting. Her staff were exceptionally helpful and efficient in making this meeting happen.
Drs. Coplan and Masters held a very informal, but information packed session explaining their research on the association between hydrofluosilicic acid and elevated blood levels in children as well as the association with violent crime. Many questions were asked about the methods used to conduct the study and clarifications were requested on a number of technical points.
Many of those present read the study before the meeting and seemed genuinely interested in the research.
A number of important points were made:
1. EPA has admitted in writing to Congress and to Dr. Masters to having absolutely no information on the chronic effects of hydrofluosilicic acid.
2. There is scientific research, hidden since 1975 in a German Ph.D. thesis by Johannes Westendorf , that shows that "under physiological conditions, dissociation [of hydrofluosilicic acid] was no more than 66% in the concentration range considered "optimum" for fluoridated water by United Sates health authorities." (quote is from Dr. Coplan) 3. Masters and Coplan, using already existing databases, found much higher levels of lead in children's blood when silico fluorides were used than when sodium fluoride or no silicofluorides were used. They controlled for all risk variables that are known for increasing lead exposure such as poverty, and old housing.
4. Black people appear to have much more lead in their blood as a result of the use of hydrofluosilicic acid than whites.
There were discussions but no conclusions or promises on what to do next. One of the options brought up by me was to cease fluoridation at one or more cities and to examine the results in declining lead levels in children and positive changes in mental health. This was apparently rejected because of fear of criticism from dentists that dental decay will become rampant. Dr. Coplan mentioned the studies showing that dental decay does not increase after fluoridation is shut down, but no one was listening at that point.
I believe that those at the meeting clearly understood the presentation and had no criticisms of the conclusions. We will have to see what happens next.