Community Water Fluoridation is a small portion of the public health work that water operators do to keep water safe, but they may not realize the impact they have on the oral health of their community. The following information includes up-to-date national and Iowa-specific resources to help water operators ensure the health and safety of communities they serve.
Community Water Fluoridation in Iowa
Iowa HHS monitors fluoride levels in community water systems by working with local water operators, providing education and technical assistance to city officials, water municipalities, public health professionals, and the public. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the regulatory agency for water fluoridation in Iowa and ensures fluoride levels do not exceed secondary and maximum contaminant levels and water systems are tracking daily fluoride levels when added to the water system. This partnership has shown to be a key factor in the success of Community Water Fluoridation in Iowa.
Community Water Fluoridation started in Iowa in 1951 with the city of Waukon, and the city is still fluoridating their water today. 2022 data shows that 88.4% of Iowans have access to fluoridated drinking water, over 2.3 million people. However, only about 69.9% have access to optimally fluoridated water. Iowa HHS works with the Iowa DNR and local water operators to continue to improve those who receive optimally fluoridated water. House File 390 went into effect on July 1, 2021.