The British Fluoridation Society appoints new Committee Members

The British Fluoridation Society (BFS) is pleased to welcome Sharon Walker and Sakina Needham to its Executive Committee.

Sharon Walker has worked in dentistry for more than 30 years, starting her career as a dental nurse in general practice and going onto work with the Community Dental Service and leading its Oral Health Improvement Team.

Sharon has had a varied career incorporating clinical practice, teaching and public health experience. She chaired the National Oral Health Promotion Group (NOHPG) from 2013 to 2016 and has a keen interest in dental public health. She completed a Masters degree in health and social care in 2020 and continues to be an active advocate for oral health and reducing inequalities within the Bradford and Airedale District.

Sharon said: “I am delighted to be joining the BFS Executive at this exciting time with the changes to the 2022 Health and Care Act. I hope to bring my knowledge and experience of working within the oral health field with the aim to drive forward and support the water fluoridation agenda. Community water fluoridation is one the most effective ways to reduce dental inequalities and benefits both adults and children’s oral health. Everyone deserves a healthy smile.”

Sakina Needham has been a registered dental care professional (DCP) for 15 years, where she has expanded her scope of practice in private, NHS, community and voluntary settings mostly in the Lincolnshire area.

Throughout her career, Sakina has developed a passion for educating and supporting children and their parents on their journey to better oral health.

She explains: “I have spent the last five years developing my skills as a mentor and tutor and have found a home with a leading training academy teaching dental nurses and dental practice managers, based in Cambridgeshire.

“I am honoured to be joining the BFS Executive Committee and hope to bring a deeply passionate and well-experienced energy that will continue to highlight the importance of fluoridation in our communities and I hope to encourage more dental nurses to join us in our public message.”

The British Fluoridation Society was founded in 1969 to work for improved dental health in the UK through the introduction of community water fluoridation schemes. Primarily its role educates and co-ordinates medical, dental, educational, and administrative efforts to promote the improvement of dental health by securing the optimum fluoride content of water supplies (one part per million) in areas where high levels of tooth decay remain a public health problem.

Welcoming Sharon and Sakina on board, Dr Barry Cockcroft CBE and BFS chair, said: “This is an exciting time to be joining the BFS Executive Committee. I am delighted to welcome Sharon and Sakina to the team. They bring a diverse range of expertise and practical knowledge, which will be of great benefit to our work as move forward in our commitment to educate and encourage more communities to adopt water fluoridation as a safe means of reducing dental health inequalities in the UK.”