A Ciência Social da Medicina

DAVOS – Quando fui estudante de medicina, em meados da década de 1980, contraí malária na Papua Nova Guiné. Foi uma experiência horrível. Doeu-me a cabeça. A minha febre disparou. Fiquei anémico. Mas tomei o meu remédio, e melhorei. A experiência não foi agradável, mas graças a medicamentos baratos e eficazes contra a malária nunca estive em grande perigo.

Os comprimidos que me curaram, de cloroquina, já não são eficazes. Mesmo quando os tomei, o parasita que causa a malária já se tinha tornado resistente à cloroquina em muitos pontos do mundo; a Papua Nova Guiné foi um dos últimos lugares onde os comprimidos continuaram a ser eficazes, e mesmo aí já estavam a perder a sua potência. Hoje, a cloroquina basicamente desapareceu do nosso arsenal médico.

A capacidade crescente dos agentes patogénicos em resistir a antibióticos e a outros medicamentos antimicrobianos está a tornar-se na maior crise emergente para os cuidados de saúde contemporâneos – e é uma crise que não pode ser solucionada apenas pela ciência.

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