Raise awareness of environmental health issues in order to better protect our children and future generations.

18 May 2018

Austria: Vienna Symposium on Safe Use of Digital Technology"- Vienna, 17 May 2018

The symposium took place on 17 May 2018.  See program here.

Wireless Internet and Mobile Communications: The Medical Association warns of careful handling

Symposium on new wireless and mobile technologies clarifies risks - Szekeres: "Protecting young people and children in particular"

With the publication of the "10 Medical Mobile Phone Rules", the Vienna Medical Association has been providing medical care and wireless internet preventive medical care for more than ten years, and the Medical Association is now organizing the "Vienna Symposium on Safe Use of Digital Technology" as a continuation of the Nicosia Declaration of 2017. In the Nicosia Declaration, the Medical Association together with Cypriot institutions had published protective measures against mobile phone radiation and rules for children and adolescents, and called for a ban on WLAN in kindergartens and schools.

For Medical Council President Thomas Szekeres, it is clear that the development of new wireless technologies and demographic change will "bring new challenges to public health prevention and security." It is therefore important to "work with them in a healthy and environmentally sound way, asking questions objectively. "

The symposium initiator and environmental consultant Piero Lercher now sees "digitalization in general and the various mobile technologies in particular as a constant companion of the human species." The major challenge here is "safe handling and the avoidance of potential health and environmental consequences without loss of comfort".

Internationally accompanied, the symposium will be co-organized by the National Committee for Environment and Child Health of Cyprus and the Press and Information Office of the Greek Embassy in Vienna. Cyprus' representative Stella Canna Michaelidou clarifies that "the scientific evidence pointing to damage that can be severe and in some cases irreversible, especially for newborns and children, despite strong scientific controversy, is strong enough to support use of preventative measures to minimize exposure".

Konstantinos Prokakis, First Counselor and Head of the Press and Information Office of the Greek Embassy in Vienna, uses the current digital strategy of Greece as an example: "Especially in Greece, where digitization after the financial crisis is a great opportunity for economic recovery, one is aware that the misuse of new technologies poses potential risks. "It is therefore up to policymakers and society to address these potential risks through coordination and governance in the areas of research, education and health.

"Increase of DNA breaks in human cells"

Due to the new technologies, there is an "unfavorable effect" on the body, namely "the increase in DNA breaks in certain human cells," notes the Vienna-based AKH physician and cell researcher Wilhelm Mosgöller.  Current scientific analysis suggests that some cells are relatively more responsive, "a finding that is especially true for children and adolescents who have a greater percentage of metabolically active 'growing' tissues".

Keynote speaker George Carlo criticizes above all the "lack of prevention thoughts of the responsible industry, which, paired with our consumption behavior and political expediency, created this monster." Carlo, who used to work for this same "industry", therefore sees the future ambivalently: "We have all the technological possibilities to master the challenges, but there is still a lack of social motivation."

Original article in German:

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