Human Right to health
December 10, 2010 § Leave a comment
All people have a right to health. The concept of health as the bedrock of development is not a novel idea. Health has been accepted as a major human right issue for many decades. Hans Rosling once said, “Build health, then Wealth” and I was struck by the simplicity of the concept. If a man is healthy, he is more equipped to do the things that will allow him to build his wealth. Health then means development, or perhaps, health is the gateway to development. Most international conventions and documents suggest this very sentiment.
Article 25, of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, states “everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for … health and well-being of himself and his family, including food, clothing, housing, medical care and the right to security in the event of … sickness, disability…. Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance…. “. Further the Convention on the Rights of the Child also recognizes the “right of the child to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health and to facilities for the treatment of illness and rehabilitation of health…
The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) also prescribed three health specific targets with indicators for World Development; the reduction of child mortality, improving maternal health, and combating major epidemics such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases. If 3 of 8 international goals are related to health, then it must mean that health is a fundamental requirement for development and human dignity.
This is commitment, to find ways to help all people live healthier lives, which is their human right.