AUSTRALIA’S medical leaders are warning the West that the “West is losing control” of its medical science and will not be able to solve its problems unless it stops thinking about itself as a “first world” nation.
Dr Andrew Glynn, chief executive of the World Health Organisation, made the warning as the global health body prepared to release its World Health Report for 2017.
The report, due to be released in December, will highlight the “danger” posed by climate change and the spread of infectious diseases.
“We are in a new world and we are losing control,” Dr Glynn said.
Glynn said the West was becoming less and less interested in solving its problems and instead focusing on its own interests.
Western leaders, he said, “have become more interested in their own self-interest, which is not sustainable”.
Dr Glynn made his remarks as the WHP was due to publish its annual report for the 2017 edition.
But he warned that the West’s “economic interests are not going to go away” unless it is willing to “rethink” its foreign policy.
He said the “global economic power structure” was becoming “increasingly unbalanced”.
The WHP said the report showed the “tipping point” was “now”, when it said: “The United States is leading the global economy, the United Kingdom is leading global affairs, China is leading world affairs, and India is leading international affairs.”
Dr Paul Seddon, the WHO’s chief medical officer, said Western leaders should be focusing on tackling the “disasters of climate change” instead of “fighting the disease”.
“This is the moment to stop thinking about ourselves as a first world nation,” Dr Seddo said.
Dr Glyn said the US, Britain, France, Germany and Japan “have a much better record of health outcomes and quality of life than we do”.
He called for “a new approach to governance” in the region.
Australia’s medical leaders also warned the West could face “dangerous” climate change without “meaningful action” to limit greenhouse gas emissions.
Professor Simon Chapman, from the School of Public Health at the University of Sydney, said the country’s health system was “in a state of disrepair”.
Professor Chapman said Australia’s “disastrous” health system had “completely failed” to address climate change.
Topics:health,health-policy,health,climate-change,united-states,canberra-2600,australiaFirst posted October 14, 2017 12:38:46More stories from Australia