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“For the better part of two decades in medicine, I considered printed journals an old friend. Getting my latest medical journal in the mail, opening it, enjoying the feel, look, and even the smell of the journal was almost like getting a monthly present. During training, Journal club was the substitute I needed for the Book of the Month clubs I could not attend with other friends. To this day, I still consider reading them time well spent.
Yet, I cannot ignore their environmental impact in an era of alarming climate change. The plastic shrink wraps, commonly made from substances like polyvinyl chloride, polyolefin, polypropylene, and polyethylene, are not readily recyclable. The same is true for the glossy paper on which most journals are printed. Adding a glued-on advertisement to the cover does not help matters either.”
Cynthia Anderson is a radiation oncologist.
She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “The case for ending printed medical journals.”
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