[UPDATED 20 May 2021]
Australian Federation of Medical Women announcement from The Health Working Group, Better Futures Australia by Magdalena Simonis, Chair AFMW Climate Health Action Group (CHAG).
The Australian Federation of Medical Women (AFMW) is proud to be a member of the Better Futures Australia Health Working Group, which includes representatives from Doctors for the Environment Australia, Australasian College for Emergency Medicine, Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association, NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association, and Climate and Health Alliance.
We see Climate Action as the greatest health opportunity to prevent premature deaths, address climate and health inequity and unlock substantial health and economic benefits.
To this effect, AFMW is one of 58 member organisations to have co-signed the letter addressed and sent to the Prime Minister on 30th April 2021, urging him to commit to:
- Including health in our official Paris Agreement contribution
- Decarbonising health by 2040
- Enact a National Strategy on Climate, Health and Wellbeing.
AFMW Climate Health Action Group Vision
- Advocate for awareness of Climate Change and its gendered impacts
- Encourage membership participation in Climate Change advocacy at local, state, national and international levels
- Recommend doctors and hospitals decarbonize their practices and hospitals by 2040
- Unify the voice of medical women to collectively pressure governments locally, nationally and internationally
- Conduct research on climate change and health effects on women and children through our affiliations
- Reflect on indigenous knowledge of land and health and incorporate these messages
Interested Members Welcome
Other interested members from Australian states and territories are welcome. I invite members from each state and territory to join the AFMW Climate Health Action Group, promote the AFMW actions agreed upon and and represent their state activities. We need Climate Health Action Group members and champions for the cause in each state. Please contact me via [email protected].
6 Practice Tips to Help Decarbonize Our Planet
- Deprescribing versus lifestyle and social prescribing
- Telehealth: access to medical appointments. Telehealth appointments and lower carbon alternatives to transport (eg, walk, ride, public transport) are effective strategies, where safe and appropriate.
- Food choices- recommend reducing red meat intake
- Switch to renewable energy
- Invest ethically. Movie your money to align with community and planetary health – this is a very effective strategy.
- Offsetting emissions. Greenhouse gas emissions associated with our personal and professional lives or medical practice are easy to calculate online. It is then possible to donate to an organisation that offsets those emissions with various projects, such as tree planting, soil sequestration projects, renewable energy projects and sustainable farming education.
For more info please visit: https://insightplus.mja.com.
au/2021/4/lets-get-practical- how-we-can-heal-the-planet- and-our-patients/
Magdalena is the President of the AFMW (2020-) and former President of VMWS (2013 & 2017-2020).
Magdalena’s deep engagements with the RACGP over many years includes chair of Women in General Practice, is currently on the RACGP Expert Committee Quality Care, prior to that on RACGP eHealth Expert Committee. She is a regular media spokesperson on numerous health issues, being interviewed most weeks by mainstream and medical media. Magdalena has represented the RACGP at senate enquiries and has worked on several National Health Framework reviews.
Both an RACGP examiner and University examiner she supervises medical students and undertakes general practice research. Roles outside of RACGP include the Strategy and Policy Committee for Breast Cancer Network Australia, Board Director of Women’s Health Victoria and Chair of their Strategy and Policy subcommittee and the AMA Victoria GP Network Committee.
Magdalena has presented at the United Nations as part of the Australian Assembly and was recently appointed the Australian representative to the World Health Organisation, World Assembly on COVID 19, by the Medical Women’s International Association (MWIA).