CHRISTINE CASSEL, M. D.; ANDREW JAMETON, Ph.D.
The attention of physicians is being drawn to the issue of nuclear weapons and nuclear war, creating controversy about whether a political concern is appropriate for health care professionals. The use of nuclear weapons would incur human death and injury on a scale both unprecedented and unimaginable, and possibly damage the ecosphere far beyond the weapons' immediate effects. Medical supplies and facilities would be nonexistent; no meaningful medical response would be possible. A physician's responsibility to prevent nuclear war is based on the imperative to prevent a devastating incurable disease that cannot be treated. Such an imperative is consistent with the historic tradition of the social responsibility of health professionals, and can be justified by philosophical argument.
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CASSEL C, JAMETON A. Medical Responsibility and Thermonuclear War. Ann Intern Med. 1982;97:426–432. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-97-3-426
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1982;97(3):426-432.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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