Navigation Links
World leaders must be more open about their health

Anyone who runs for Prime Minister or President should have an independent health examination to ensure their ability to govern, argues a doctor on today.

Lord David Owen, a trained doctor and member of the House of Lords, says that millions of people are affected by the decisions of people in high public office, and these leaders have an obligation to the general public to ensure that their decision making is not impaired by physical or mental illness.

No one has to stand for high public office he says, "if potential candidates knew they faced independent assessment and that they had a health problem then they would either not stand or they would make it public of their own volition."

According to Owen, many heads of governments and their personal doctors do not tell the truth about their illness and have received inferior medical treatment as a result of this secrecy. For example, when Francois Mitterrand was President of France he kept his cancer of the prostate and secondaries in the bone secret for 11 years, even though his personal doctor made monthly public statements about his health with no mention of his true medical condition.

More recently, despite happily revealing his medical records from Vietnam, in the run up to the US elections, Senator McCain was not so open about his malignant melanoma diagnosis.

When in office, leaders should be obliged to have an annual independent health check to ensure that they are fit for office and are able to step down temporarily or permanently if their illness is affecting their capacity to do the job, writes Owen.

In 1998, the Prime Minister of Norway suffered a severe depressive reaction and offered to resign. But, after discussion with the Foreign Minister, he publicly announced that he was suffering from depression, and after four weeks of treatment and adapting his working practices he returned to work. His actions commanded great respect from the Norwegian public and helped lessen the stigma surrounding mental health.

According to Owen, this example illustrates the lessening prejudice and much greater public understanding of illness. A greater openness would not necessarily preclude someone with an illness from convincing their party and the public that they are fit for office, he concludes.


Contact: Rachael Davies
BMJ-British Medical Journal

Related medicine news :

1. Amedica Receives CE Mark for the Worlds First FDA-Cleared Valeo(TM) Ceramic Spinal Implant System
2. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine Among Top Insurers on U.S. News & World Report/National Committee for Quality Assurance Americas Best Health Plans List
3. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine Ranks in Top 6% of all insurers on U.S. News & World Report/National Committee for Quality Assurance Best Health Plans List
4. World Publics See Government as Responsible for Ensuring Basic Healthcare, Food, and Education Needs
5. Preferred Care Gold Ranked Number One Medicare Advantage Health Plan Nationally In U.S. News & World Report/NCQA Americas Best Health Plans 2008 Listing
6. Insmed Gains Royalty-Free Worldwide Rights for IPLEX(TM) in Connection with Potential Expanded Access ALS Programs
7. World Laboratory Washing Machines Market to Reach $84.9 Million by 2012, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts
8. Audio: Kaiser Permanente is Colorados Top Commercial and Medicare Plan on U.S. News & World Report/NCQA Americas Best Health Plans List
9. Shopko Announces Erins World Eyewear
10. Crisis in Congo: World Vision Begins Relief Efforts for Thousands of Displaced, Calls on Regional Leaders to Act
11. World's Largest Modeling and Simulation Exhibition Sells Out for '08
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... N.J. (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... Quality ... sources, yet in many ways they remain in the eye of the beholder, according ... (EBO), a publication of The American Journal of Managed Care. For the full issue, ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... ... PawPaws brand pet supplements owned by Whole Health Supply is ... of felines. The formula is all-natural and is made from Chinese herbs that have ... Kidney Support Supplement Soft Chews are Astragalus Root Extract and Rehmannia Root Extract ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... Experts from the American Institutes for ... Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. , AIR ... care planning, healthcare costs and patient and family engagement. , AIR researchers will ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, ... Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... athletes and non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as ... City area —Johnson is one of the first doctors to perform the treatment. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Mass. , June 24, 2016   ... Spaulding Rehabilitation Network,s Dean Center for Tick ... Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, MIT Hacking Medicine, University ... for Innovation, today announced the five finalists of ... for Lyme disease.  More than 100 scientists, clinicians, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. , June 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... pulmonary function testing company, is now able to perform sophisticated lung ... ndd Medical Technologies , Inc. Patients are ... labs.  Thanks to ndd,s EasyOne PRO ® , ARL patients like ... any needed testing done in the comfort of her own home. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a leading innovator ... more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today announced it ... funding is led by Innova Memphis, followed by ... private investors.  Arkis, new financing will accelerate the ... market release of its in-licensed Endexo® technology. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: