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January 16 2016, Saturday

EDITORIAL
 
     
 
   
   
     

Environmental Impact on Eye Health - Dr SS Agarwal Dr KK Aggarwal

Expanding areas of arid land, air pollution and greater exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation all present potential health hazards to the eyes.

The cornea, eyelid, the sclera and even the lens—are all exposed directly to the environment. Rising temperatures and shifting atmospheric circulation patterns force dry air into regions. Drier air means that more people are likely to suffer from dry eye, a condition in which tears aren’t produced properly or evaporate too quickly. There is no evidence that drier conditions cause dry eye but they can accelerate symptoms in people who are prone to dry eye.

Air pollution has long been linked to respiratory disorders; more recently it’s been shown to play a role in eye disease.

Exposure to wood or charcoal cooking fires—ubiquitous in many developing countries—appears to accelerate the scarring caused by trachoma. Recurrent infections over a lifetime lead to scarring inside of the eyelids, which in turn causes the eyelashes to turn inward and brush against the cornea, eventually resulting in damage that impairs vision.

 

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PRESS RELEASE

IMA recommends practicing green medicine 

 

New Delhi, January 15, 2016Through the process of photosynthesis, plants are uniquely placed to consume harmful carbon dioxide and produce oxygen required for the sustenance of life. Any effort towards reducing pollution would inevitably require a parallel focus on deforestation (or reforestation) to be effective in the medium and long term. IMA believes that physicians as health specialists, who hold an educating role in society must take it upon themselves to make their offices greener, and proliferate green behavior with their patients.

Commenting on this, Dr. S.S Agarwal – National President and Padma Shri Awardee Dr. KK Aggarwal – Honorary Secretary General of IMA “More than 140 actions and educational steps have been proposed and documented by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) on varied topics including climate change, renewable energy, solid waste recycling, energy and water conservation, indoor chemical use, transportation options, organic foods and landscape management. Specific suggestions include adopting energy conservation policies at home and commercial properties, using recyclable plates and utensils if disposable, and consumption of organic foods grown without using harmful chemicals and pesticides.”

This is over and above compliance with biomedical waste management norms that have been clearly specified by standards such as the National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH) in India, and the Joint Commission International (JCI) globally.

A partner organization of the World Medical Association (WMA), My Green Doctor, offers help to physicians in proliferating green thinking. My Green Doctor is a free service guiding physicians to make their outpatient medical settings (including diagnostic centers and clinics) more green, in a manner that saves them money overall. While an initiative launched out of the United States, applicability of its teaching are universal. Patients and physicians both suffer alike with the deteriorating environment.

Furthermore, their practices, utilizing various therapeutic, diagnostic, and patient monitoring equipment, undeniably add to the load on urban and rural power grids. It is hence the duty of doctors to educate society on environmental-friendly practices, starting with their implementing such policies in their own healthcare establishments.

 

 

 

 

   
 
 
   
 
     
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