Food, climate change and resistance to antimicrobials, the lack of generational replacement of health professionals and misinformation campaigns are the issues that directly affect thousands of deaths in Spain and can also big problems in the near future. must be faced.
It was defended by the experts who participated in the debate table of the ANIS Congress ‘The 5 Ws of Health of the 21st Century’ which was held this Saturday and which was attended by the acting Minister of Health of the Government of Spain, José Miñone.
First, the doctor of Biochemistry and master’s degree in Nutrition and Health, Emilia Gómez Pardo, started the table with a conference focused on ‘Food, lifestyle and health’ where he warned the “reality” of “bad food” and its impact on health.
Gómez laments that “poor food” means the death of millions of people and leads to the appearance of people with chronic diseases, in addition to leaving a “carbon footprint that is very large.” “Bad food costs us a lot of life, a lot of land and a lot of water and of course a lot of money to manage the disease,” he pointed out.
On the other hand, the coordinator of the Urban Planning, Environment and Health Initiative of ISGlobal, Carolyn Daher, stated that “no one is immune to the health effects” of pollution, and warned that only in Spain, where “90% of people breathing air that is not suitable for health”, 30,000 deaths occurred due to poor air quality, while heat deaths are on track to exceed 12,000 in all of 2023.
However, he specified that climate change and air quality “are not the same” and are not treated equally and requested that these problems “are not a debate” but “a health issue.”
Regarding disinformation, its impact on the security of states is the subject discussed by the representative of the Department of National Security, Cabinet of the Presidency of the Government, Diego Florentín, who warned of the “threat” caused by targeted campaigns. interested actors in contexts such as the health crisis itself or electoral processes.
These actors, he pointed out, are trying to “exploit the weaknesses” of the system to “promote polarization” and “weaken the bilateral relations of a State” and guide public opinion towards certain interests, as as stated by the expert in his presentation. “Disinformation and Health Security”.
The situation of Primary Care in Spain and Europe is the focus of the presentation ‘Are we in time to improve the situation of health personnel?’, implemented by the head of the Unit, Health Personnel and Service Delivery in Office WHO Regional Director for Europe, Tomás Zapata, who defines the lack of generational replacement of health professionals as a “ticking time bomb”.
As he explained, it is estimated that within five years there will be a deficit of 9,000 doctors, despite the fact that, he emphasized, the number of graduates in the past years. The imbalance happens, he said, because of the aging of the health personnel, especially in areas like family doctors, which causes the imbalance to happen in a few years.
Zapata also warned of “burnout”, which affects half of doctors due to the increase in demands or the impact of the pandemic on their mental health and which causes an increase in the departure of the profession.
“More pandemics are coming”
The coordinator of the Interdisciplinary Global Health Platform of the CSIC, Margarita del Val, starred in the conference ‘New global challenges due to infectious diseases’, where she asked to “be realistic” and consider that “there will continue. that may problems of infectious diseases” and pandemics.
In his opinion, the “unregulated” processes of urban development and extensive contact with animals in areas of Southeast Asia or central and western Africa are the cause of the emergence of new diseases, where, as he, today’s society is “more ready. .” after Covid-19 and with “more vigilance.”
Margarita del Val celebrated that thanks to more anticipation, infectious agents such as Nile fever or monkeypox, which were “threats” of pandemics, were able to be controlled. That’s right, he says: “antimicrobial resistance is a slow but sure pandemic and it needs to be taken seriously.”