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The BMJ joins forces with Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare to launch The Recovery

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The BMJ joins forces with Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare to launch The Recovery

New podcast series will look at initiatives to wind back the medical excess that is causing harm to people and the planet

The BMJ has joined forces with Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare to launch a new podcast series called The Recovery co-hosted by The BMJ’s Editor in Chief Dr Fiona Godlee and journalist and Bond University health researcher Dr Ray Moynihan.

The series will feature compelling and inspirational conversations with healthcare researchers, doctors, and activists from around the world who are actively working to wind back medical excess and forge more sustainable healthcare systems to improve our health, wellbeing, and climate. 

Over six episodes, listeners will hear about new and sometimes radical initiatives that are changing the way doctors practice medicine, to ensure better access to high quality, evidence-based, and safe healthcare.

Highlights include: 

  • The Australian doctors fearlessly challenging professional norms to wind back ineffective and dangerous care
  • A high-profile cancer specialist in India helping to reduce wasteful care in low and middle income countries
  • A US-based doctor leading a non-violent revolution of care, built on compassion and solidarity
  • A UK general practitioner championing physical activity, creating garden spaces, and improving access to fresh food, to empower patients, improve equity, and enhance the community’s wellbeing and health

“All these voices are part of a growing global chorus campaigning for fundamental reform of how we practice medicine and showing that radical new alternatives are imminently feasible,” write Godlee, Moynihan and Dr Minna Johansson, Director of Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare, in an opinion article to launch the series.

“All those unnecessary tests, treatments, and diagnoses bring direct harm to people through adverse effects of drugs and surgeries, psychosocial harms of labelling, and increasing the burden of treatments. 

And since resources for healthcare are finite, waste is also harming patients indirectly because the overuse of some medical interventions means there are less resources to tackle underuse and underdiagnosis in other areas.”

They acknowledge that the drivers of unsustainable healthcare are complex and diverse and say we must adapt to support more sustainable decision-making within healthcare. 

“Most healthcare extends lives and reduces suffering, but too much medicine remains unnecessary and harmful,” they warn. “Reducing medical excess is not primarily about saving money, it is about avoiding harm to people and the planet.”

We hope this podcast series will inspire listeners all over the world to imagine novel and radical approaches for a more sustainable healthcare, and to dare to move from imagination to action.”

The Recovery is available from 00:01 hrs GMT Monday 15 November at www.bmj.com/podcasts and https://sustainablehealthcare.cochrane.org/recovery

[Ends]

15/11/21

Notes for editors
Opinion: The Recovery—a podcast about action for sustainable healthcare
Journal: The BMJ

Contacts for further information:
Emma Dickinson, BMJ Media Relations, London, UK
Tel: +44 (0)7825 118 107
Email: mediarelations@bmj.com

Dina Muscat Meng, Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare Field Coordinator
Tel: +45 27 201 398
Email: dmm@cochrane.dk

Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare was registered as a new Cochrane Field in December 2019. We are located at Cochrane Sweden under the leadership of Minna Johansson. We are part of the Cochrane global community, which aims to make evidence accessible and useful to everybody, everywhere in the world. Cochrane is a network of researchers, healthcare professionals, patients, carers and people passionate about improving health outcomes for everyone.

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