World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry salutes Brazil’s Ministries of Health, Foreign Affairs, and Environment

Brasilia July 2023

The World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry salutes the federal government of Brazil both for accelerating its pace toward ending the use of dental amalgam, and for international leadership to amend the Minamata Convention on Mercury.

“We appreciate the important officials of the Health Ministry who took time to meet with us on 21 July to discuss the transition on Brazil to mercury-free dentistry, both for SUS* and in new government policies,” said Charlie Brown, president of the World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry.  Officials participated from four sections of the ministry:  environmental health, oral health, occupational health, and international.

Itamaraty** has been at the forefront of having an effective international treaty addressing mercury-free dentistry,” Brown added.  “Both during the negotiations of the basic treaty in 2012, and in the adoption of the Children’s Amendment in 2022, the government of Brazil stepped forward to play an essential and constructive role.”

“We are grateful for the leaders in the Lula government:  Minister Nísia Trindade at Health, Minister Mauro Vieira at Foreign Affairs, and Minister Marina Silva of Environment and Climate Change”, with the care and attention to health, the environment and society.

Other NGO participants in the meeting were Jeffer Castelo Branco of Associação de Combate aos Poluentes, Santos, and Maria Carcamo of the Latin American Center for Environmental Health, Montevideo.  Also participating was an expert on mercury-free dentistry from Sao Paulo state, dental surgeon Dra. Magda Siqueria.

Brazil is being flooded with amalgam from greedy exporters, especially Southern Dental Industries (SDI) of Australia.  SDI, defying the spirit of the Minamata Convention, is pumping up its amalgam sales in Brazil and elsewhere.  The World Alliance urges the Brazil government to cut off all imports from SDI until it completely stops selling amalgam.

* Sistema Único de Saúde is Brazil’s publicly funded health care system.

** Itamaraty is the nickname for the Brazilian foreign ministry.

World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry