Doctors should speak out on climate change, expert says

BMJ 2007; 335 doi: (Published 27 September 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;335:636
  1. Bob Roehr
  1. Chicago

    Doctors and health workers have a duty to draw attention to climate change and try to change people's behaviour to avert disaster, an expert on the issue told a conference in Chicago last week.

    Anthony McMichael, director of the National Centre of Epidemiology and Population Health at the Australian National University, Canberra, said that doctors had a particular responsibility because they had influence and because the health sector would have to deal with some of the worst effects of climate change.

    Addressing the annual interscience conference on antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy in Chicago, Dr McMichael acknowledged that 5-10 years ago the topic would not have been on the agenda, “but the evidence is accruing rather more rapidly than we would have anticipated.”

    Speaking to the BMJ he said that the medical profession was still held in high regard and had influence. He pointed to its leadership on the nuclear disarmament debate decades ago as an example of what …

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