Two articles on global warming and health for DEA student members

To open this medical student section of the Doctors for the Environment web page, we are printing two articles that will illustrate to you that global warming is one of the major health issues facing humanity. In using the term ‘health issue’ we are using the word health in its widest sense for the World Health Organisation has defined health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

The article on “The Worlds Fragile Islands” is about global warming which will lead to sea level rise and the inundation of many small islands around the world. As you read this article, please ask yourself ‘what are the health implications?’. Then at the end of the article there is a commentary in which this question is answered. I think you will see why Doctors for the Environment has made global warming its priority in lobbying Ministers and Members of Parliament prior to the coming election.

The article on democracy explains why global warming is a political issue and details some approaches to its solution. The message to you is that we need to be involved politically to deal with this world medical issue. As doctors we cannot provide a remedy, a vaccine, a new drug or a public health ruling to solve the problem, we have to have major policy changes by governments.