Featured Doctor

BARROS, Prof Enrique

Brazil - chair, WONCA Working Party on the Environment

Enrique Barros is from Brazil and has just been appointed Pro-tem chair of the WONCA Working Party on the Environment.

What work do you do currently?

I currently live and practice in a rural town of 6000 people in the mountains in southern Brazil - Santa Maria do Herval.

I am also professor at Universidade de Caxias do Sul, and take interns and residents on placements in my community practice. As part of my clinical practice I am on call at the regional community hospital once a week.

What other interesting activities that you have been involved in?

• Host of a national TV show called Ser Saudável ("Being Healthy") for four years.
• Research project to implement the first Brazilian Family Therapy online for rural communities.
• Helped organize the WONCA Rural Health Conference, held in Gramado Brazil in 2014.

What are your interests as a family physician and also outside work?

It is a privilege to have come to my small community and to serve it - to dutifully and respectfully watch the lives of my neighbors unfold and flourish - to witness the cycle of life (yes!, i just read the book The Fortunate Man).

I am especially interested in exploring the hidden interdependencies between people and the environment - which crystallize in my consultations and make me understand Planetary Health in a peculiar way that may be familiar to other general practitioners.

As a good Brazilian, of course I love football! and above all my family (wife and two kids).

How did you come to be involved in the WONCA Working Party on the Environment?

I first became involved while doing research on climate change and primary care in 2008 - later recognized by the Global Forum for Health Research and The Lancet (more here).

More recently, Alan Abelsohn and Grant Blashki, former Chairs of the WONCA Working Party on the Environment, invited me to contribute to an e-book “Family Doctors in the Field”. My story can be read here.

Now I find myself pro-tem Chair of the WONCA Working Party on the Environment and look forward to taking up this new role.