East Africa Dental Amalgam Phase-down Project

Pilot project to demonstrate phase down of amalgam

FDI was involved in the East Africa Dental Amalgam Phase-Down Project (EADAP), which was was implemented in Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania, under the coordination of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) Oral Health Programme, in collaboration with a number of partners. The project’s aim was to demonstrate the phase-down approach of dental amalgam use and brought together a variety of stakeholders, and was finalized in December 2013. The collaborative project engaged the Ministries of Environment and Health in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, as well as the iLima (an African NGO), FDI, the International Association of Dental Manufacturers (IDM) and National Dental Associations.

The objective of the EADAP project was to explore essential conditions for a phase down in the use of dental amalgam by:

  1. Investigating the current supply and trade of dental amalgam and materials alternative to amalgam and make recommendations for future information systems.
  2. Assessing the current waste management practices in the three East African countries.
  3. Raising awareness of preventive dental care and encouraging a switch to appropriate alternatives to dental amalgam, when clinically indicated, among dentists and patients.
  4. Demonstrating environmentally sound management of dental restoration materials waste in selected dental facilities in the three countries.
Sharing lessons learnt

The findings are useful for other countries aiming to phase down the use of dental amalgam and had the following intended outputs.

  • Report on supply and trade flow data of all dental restorative materials and recommendations for future information systems.
  • Report on dental waste management practices of all dental restorative materials, of the participating countries.
  • Raised awareness amongst patients and dentists on preventive dental care and use of clinically relevant alternative materials for dental restoration.
  • Demonstration of best dental waste management practices for all dental restorative materials.
  • Report of lessons learned providing recommendations for promoting the ‘phase down’ approach in developing countries, including process analysis.

Read: Promoting the phase down of dental amalgam in developing countries