Sustainability in the Extremes: Are we doing more harm than good?
Climbing mountains, racing across remote islands, enduring the extremes of polar travel; expedition medics are right there pushing the boundaries of human potential. Not only that, the rapidly expanding field of global health means we are better placed than ever before to deliver aid to the people who need it the most when they need it the most. But we are facing an international climate change emergency, and the global wealth divide is growing more rapidly than ever. Intercontinental flights, expecting local operators to meet unsustainable and often unnecessary demands, and unwittingly promoting quasi-colonial behaviour through poorly regulated ‘clinical tourism’ are just a few of the potential issues. Are we, as extreme medics, contributing to the destruction of the very places we seek to explore, and the very people we seek to help? Join Dr Nathan Hudson-Peacock as he discusses a few of these issues before opening the floor to debate and group participation. By the end of the session, he hopes that we will be able to suggest a series of proposals to help extreme medics be a force for positive change and not just a group of medics with an unsustainable thirst for adventure.