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Medact Briefing Paper

Patients Not Passports–challenging healthcare charging in the NHS

13.05.2019 Patients Not Passports – challenging healthcare charging in the NHS is a new Medact briefing paper examining NHS charging and the introduction of immigration controls in the NHS. It is designed to be a tool used to support people in campaigning against the Hostile Environment. It sets out the policy and ideological background to NHS charging; reframes and challenges some of the arguments used to justify the policies; and presents evidence and analysis of the likely impact of restricting access to the NHS. It also includes new data on NHS Trust’s response to the policy and reveals how little has been done to mitigate or monitor the harm it will cause.

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Medact Article, 26th April 2019

Activism, extractivism and the healthcare community

06.05.2019 A profit-driven, extractive economy is severely undermining the life support systems of the planet and exacerbating health inequities around the world. The fossil fuel industry epitomises the worst of what drives this system, and is responsible for impacting the health of hundreds of millions of people, through the climate change that it is driving. Those worst affected are people of colour in the global South. Meanwhile the profits of the fossil fuel industry are concentrated in the global North.

Anti-Trident March at Faslane

22.09.2018 On 22nd September Medact members tok part in the ‘Nae Nukes Anywhere’ peace rally at the Faslane Nuclear Base – home to the UK’s Trident submarines. Our Medact contingent joined hundreds of protestors on the stretch from the Peace Camp to the North Gate, and inspiring speakers included Makar Jackie Kay (Scottish poet laureate) and fellow poet, US ICAN co-ordinator and longtime friend of Medact Timmon Wallis. Medact members brought the health voice with our banners, placards and by handing out “prescriptions for nuclear disarmament” to interested members of the public.

AGM Weekend 2018

21.09.2018 Medact’s 2018 Annual General Meeting has been held in Glasgow on 21st September. The AGM followed by a speaker event organised with Medact Glasgow and Medact Scotland. The Friday began with a productive AGM - including the election of four new excellent Trustees: Professor Neena Modi, retired GP Lesley Morrison, Margaret Jackson, also a GP, and Communicable Diseases Consultant Kitty Mohan


Medact Annual Forum, 9.-10. December 2016, London

Medact "Healthy Planet, Better World" conference

16.12.2016 Medact’s Annual Forum, this year entitled “Healthy Planet, Better World” took place on 9 – 10 December at Friends House in central London. Hundreds of participants listened to leading speakers on topics such as climate change impacts, food and nuclear energy and joined in the debates. In the breaks many new connections were made in the corridors and intense and productive discussions took place. Highlights at the conference included the launch of “Doctors against Diesel”.

October 14-15, 2016, Nuremberg, Germany

Medicine and Conscience - What do people need?

Conference IPPNW Germany

Since 1996, IPPNW Germany has held similar congresses to focus on human rights, global health, the history of medicine, and medical ethics. 70 years after the Nuremberg war crimes trials of physicians in 1946, and 20 years after the first IPPNW "Medicine and Conscience" congress, we will revisit the topic of German doctors and national socialism in today’s research and historical analysis, looking at what we can and need to learn from the past today.


Unhealthy Investments

Why the UK healthy community’s investments in fossil fuels are bad for health.

02.03.2015 In a new report published today, Medact and other leading health and climate NGOs argue that the UK health community must phase out its investments in the fossil fuel industry, with air pollution from fossil fuels being responsible for approximately 5% of all UK deaths. The ‘Unhealthy Investments’ report warns that investment in the fossil fuel industry is incompatible with health organisations’ moral and professional responsibilities to address these direct health implications, and the longer-term health impacts of climate change.

David McCoy, Medact

The social, political and ecological pathologies of Ebola Crisis cannot be ignored

12.11.2014 The Ebola virus is finally receiving attention after years of being ignored as just another deadly disease in Africa. Yet it was only when the current outbreak got out of control and threatened commercial and western interests did the story became news. While Ebola is lethal and dangerous, it is not an airborne disease. There is no carrier state and only a brief period of being asymptomatic and infectious. However, the crisis won’t end before tens of thousands have died – either from the disease or indirectly due to clinics and hospitals being shut down and the economy being damaged.


October 28, 2014

Medact Student Blog: Inequality and Health – Lecture Summary

28.10.2014 In the first event of the Global Health Justice series, Medact and QMUL hosted a talk titled ‘Global Health Justice: Harnessing academia to inform policy’. This was attended by Global health students and health professionals.

Report, IPPNW Greece

Peace Boat in Piraeus

08.09.2014 Peace activists in Piraeus and Athens, the capital of Greece, welcomed the Peace Boat (Ocean Dream) to the main Greek Port of Pireas at the end of a round the world voyage for the abolition and the total ban of nuclear weapons. Upon arrival to the Port of Piraeus Mr Yuki Hirayama, on behalf of PeaceBoat and Greek peace organizations, handed the Mayor of Piraeas, Mr Yannis Moralis, a letter from the Mayor of Hiroshima, Mr. Kazumi Matsui, in his capacity as President of the “Mayors for Peace” international movement. Mayors for Peace promotes the gobal 2020 vision campaign for the abolition of nuclear weapons by the year 2020.

IPPNW statement on the criminalization of emergency medical care in Turkey

23.01.2014 IPPNW joins the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health, the World Medical Association, Physicians for Human Rights, and other major medical associations in calling for revocation of a provision of a new Turkish law that would compromise access to emergency medical care in Turkey and make it a crime for independent medical practitioners to provide emergency care in certain situations. Article 46 of the health law drafted by the Turkish Grand National Assembly and signed by Abdullah Gül, president of the Turkish Republic, appears to be targeted at political protesters, imposing fines and up to three years of imprisonment on private practitioners who offer emergency care after the arrival of a state ambulance.


National meeting of refugee health activists in Düsseldorf, Germany


Undocumented migrants ("sans papiers"/"Papierlose") do not have the possibility to access health care in Germany and are thus funamentally denied their basic right to health. The German IPPNW affiliate and several local IPPNW groups have worked hard on changing the perception of "Papierlose" amongst politicians, the media, medical personal and the general public, have initiated public debate, called for changes in immigration policy and have started local initiatives to tend to the needs of the affected people .


New report on preventing torture

21.11.2011 Medact's new report "Preventing Torture: the role of physicians and their professional organisations: principles and practice" was launched in September with a Comment piece in the Lancet. The report considers how professional medical bodies can more effectively work towards eliminating torture, both through the support they give their members, and in their response to medical complicity. it concludes with recommendaitons for National Medical Associations and for the World Medical Association. There is clear evidence that there is still much to be done both to protect medical professionals who expose torture, and to prevent medical complicity in it. This report is part of a 'work in progress' to address this unacceptable siutation.

Global Health Watch


16.10.2008 Over 150 people attended the London launch of Global Health Watch 2 at University College London on October 16th and the report is presently being launched in over 22 countries around the world. Produced by the People’s Health Movement, Medact and the Global Equity Gauge Alliance in South Africa, GHW2 presents an alternative view of health in the 21st century that is sorely needed.


A right to health for all

Medact´s 15th year

15.09.2007 In 2006 Medact promoted the right of all people to the highest attainable standard of health inmany diverse situations. This is a right not even guaranteed to some of the most vulnerable people in the UK. Through the Refugee Health Network and the Reaching Out Project, Medact tried to ensure that "failed" asylumseekers have access to healthcare. Meanwhile the NHS continues to benefit from health professionals trained overseas, often by far poorer governments than our own.

Clara Immerwahr Award goes to Osman Murat Ülke

German affiliate of IPPNW

18.01.2007 This year´s Clara Immerwahr Award will be given to Osman Murat Ülke who has consistently defended his right to conscientious objection in Turkey. Because of this he has faced extreme personal disadvantages over many years. On March 3, 2007, the German affiliate of IPPNW (International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War) will present the award to Coskus Üsterci, Ülke´s representative, in the Georges Casalis Room of the Französische Friedrichsstadt Church in Berlin. Ülke himself has not been allowed to leave Turkey for several years.


The Refugee Camp Project

International Student Project

03.05.2006 In the Refugee Camp project (ReCap), medical students from all over the world have the chance to live and work in a refugee camp for one month each summer, mainly working in the health units and with the children of the camps. For the past two years, our Palestinian students have hosted groups of IPPNW students in Bethlehem refugee camps and since last year, IFMSA has joined this program.

Statement of the Nobel Peace Laureates

Nobel Peace Prize Congress in Rome, 2005

26.11.2005 "As Nobel Peace Laureates and Nobel Peace Laureate organizations we have gathered in Rome, Italy these past three days and deliberated on global issues with a particular concern regarding Africa. Our rapidly changing complex and contradictory world presents several features that must be recognized if we are to build more effective governance for a better world order: Globalization is accelerating and despite recognized interdependencies billions of people remain excluded from its benefits. New giants, such as China, India and Brazil are emerging and no solution to world challenges can be achieved without their full participation."