International Federation of Medical Students' Associations

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Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
11.6 Health, environment and climate change

This statement is delivered on behalf of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations and the World Medical Association, supported by the Global Climate and Health Alliance.

We applaud the progress made on this global strategy and the call for a new health-guided transformative approach to life, work, production, consumption and governance. We further commend the call for a prompt implementation of a health in all policies approach at all levels of governance.

We would like to stress on the importance of climate change action including the health co-benefits of mitigation and adaptation strategies. It is also crucial to build climate resilient health systems that ensure the provision of quality healthcare for all.

Therefore, we call on Governments to adopt a comprehensive approach to integrate health into national climate change policies and national disaster risk reduction frameworks, and to integrate climate change into public health and health care plans and policies. We also urge them to meet an emissions trajectory consistent with the limiting of the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels and to engage in a fair international negotiation process under the UNFCCC; Second, we call on all relevant stakeholders to lead by example by establishing and following an organizational sustainability policy; and to divest from the fossil fuel industry.

We strongly believe that health should be at the center of climate change negotiations and that climate change should be integrated into health planning. It is due time to make amends for past mistakes, and take action towards a healthier future, and a healthier planet.