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[Perspectives] Histories of medical lobbying

The lobbying of government ministers by medical professionals is a live issue. Health professionals around the world have been active in the pursuit of legislative change. In the UK, the AllTrials campaign continues to exert pressure on parliamentarians to force greater transparency in the publication of clinical trial results. This year doctors in Australia refused to discharge child refugees from hospital into detention centres deemed harmful to their health. The lobbying of medical humanitarians such as Médecins sans Frontières in France effected a change in the law there, in 1998, that allowed undocumented immigrants with life-threatening conditions to remain in the country for medical treatment.