Wednesday 4th August 2021
Wednesday, 4th of August 2021
Home / Cover / Medical professionals demand green recovery from COVID-19

Medical professionals demand green recovery from COVID-19

Doctors and medical professionals from around the globe have called on world leaders to “recover better” from the economic decline caused by the COVID-19 crisis by investing in a low-carbon and resilient economy that would bring substantial health as well as environmental benefits.

Doctors
Medical professionals at work

This call adds to the growing momentum around the world to seize the opportunity presented by the current corona crisis to rebuild economies in a cleaner and greener way. While greenhouse gas emissions are set to fall this year in the wake of the crisis, any positive impact on the climate could be short-lived and quickly outweighed by increased emissions if the economic recovery resumes on a high-carbon path.

The joint letter by over 350 organisations representing over 40 million health professionals – approximately half of the global medical workforce – stated: “Health professionals stand united in support of a pragmatic, science-based approach to managing the COVID-19 pandemic. In that same spirit, we also stand united in support of a healthy recovery from this crisis.”

ALSO READ:  Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro tests positive for coronavirus

In the letter, the health professionals link air pollution and fragile public health systems with the impacts of the virus, saying air pollution “was already weakening our bodies,” thereby exacerbating the impact of the disease. The letter also addresses the threats posed by unabated climate change and deforestation, which can potentially unleash new health threats upon vulnerable populations.

“Recover better” was also the core message at last month’s Petersberg Climate Dialogue, a virtual meeting of more than 30 governments on the climate crisis.

Speaking at the dialogue, UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, said: “Where taxpayers’ money is used to rescue businesses, it must be creating green jobs and sustainable and inclusive growth. It must not be bailing out outdated, polluting, carbon-intensive industries.”

ALSO READ:  Nigeria needs $140bn to achieve climate commitments, says World Bank

To ensure a “healthy recovery,” the letter urges that chief medical officers and chief scientific advisors must be directly involved in putting together all economic stimulus packages now under way to ensure that they include considerations of public health and environmental concerns and to give their stamp of approval.

“The enormous investments your governments will make over the coming months in key sectors like health care, transport, energy and agriculture must have health protection and promotion embedded at their core,” the letter said.

The signatories also want governments to redirect fossil fuel subsidies towards renewable energy, which they say would cut greenhouse gas emissions, lead to cleaner air, and help spur economic growth of nearly $100 trillion by 2050.

ALSO READ:  EU to purchase more 300m doses of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, research claims it might be effective against new strains

The signatories include the World Medical Association, the International Council of Nurses, the Commonwealth Nurses and Midwives Federation, the World Organisation of Family Doctors and the World Federation of Public Health Associations, as well as thousands of individual health professionals.

x

Check Also

Facemask Production Training

Fewer women than men will regain work during COVID-19 recovery – ILO

Fewer women will regain jobs lost to the COVID-19 pandemic during the recovery period than ...

%d bloggers like this: