On the World Environment day 5 June, 2019 – A group of activists came to the Ministry of Health to present a call from more than 100 organizations to Health Minister Jens Spahn. They are calling on him to agree to a general ban on amalgam fillings, thereby joining the example of Sweden and Norway.
Due to a European environmental protection regulation for the reduction of mercury emissions the Federal Government must take position at present. It is to submit a plan by 1 July 2019 on how it intends to further reduce the use of amalgam after the ban for children and pregnant and breastfeeding women. Mercury from amalgam fillings (more than 50% per filling) accounts for by far the most consumption of the highly toxic heavy metal in Europe.
Florian Schulze, Managing Director of the Interest Group for Environmental Dentistry, said: “More than 100 organisations worldwide are calling on the Federal Government to lead by example. In Germany, too, mercury has accumulated strongly in the environment, so that there are no more waters that comply with the environmental guideline values. Amalgam fillings also contribute to this. The many amalgam-free dentists in Germany show that they are no longer dependent on this material. It is superfluous and harmful, but is still permitted due to financial interests, but the costs for alternative fillings are even lower if all factors are taken into account. We ask Jens Spahn to set an example for progress and modern dentistry”.
Martina Heimann from the self-help group of Amalgam-victims also urged to stop using of mercury amalgam in dentistry not for children and pregnant women but also for other people. This filling material causes extensive damage to the environment also poses a clear risk to health. In his opinion he also suggested ban other mercury containing products and use alternatives.
On behalf of Health Minister Jens Spahn, Andreas Brandhorst, Head of Department for Contract Dental Care at the Federal Ministry of Health, accepted the appeal and assured that he would take the demands very seriously and take the arguments into account when making a decision.