Human Rights (Key Ideas)


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Requires that health facilities, goods, and services must be accessible to everyone. Accessibility has four overlapping dimensions:. Assessing accessibility may require analysis of barriers — physical financial or otherwise — that exist, and how they may affect the most vulnerable, and call for the establishment or application of clear norms and standards in both law and policy to address these barriers, as well as robust monitoring systems of health-related information and whether this information is reaching all populations.

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Relates to respect for medical ethics, culturally appropriate, and sensitivity to gender. Acceptability requires that health facilities, goods, services and programmes are people-centred and cater for the specific needs of diverse population groups and in accordance with international standards of medical ethics for confidentiality and informed consent.

Facilities, goods, and services must be scientifically and medically approved. Quality is a key component of Universal Health Coverage, and includes the experience as well as the perception of health care. Quality health services should be:. WHO has made a commitment to mainstream human rights into healthcare programmes and policies on national and regional levels by looking at underlying determinants of health as part of a comprehensive approach to health and human rights. In addition, WHO has been actively strengthening its role in providing technical, intellectual, and political leadership on the right to health including:.

Addressing the needs and rights of individuals at different stages across the life course requires taking a comprehensive approach within the broader context of promoting human rights, gender equality, and equity.

What is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?

As such, WHO promotes a concise and unifying framework that builds on existing approaches in gender, equity, and human rights to generate more accurate and robust solutions to health inequities. The integrated nature of the framework is an opportunity to build on foundational strengths and complementarities between these approaches to create a cohesive and efficient approach to promote health and well-being for all.

UN General Assembly. UN Doc. Human rights and health 29 December In many cases, the right to health has been adopted into domestic law or Constitutional law. A rights-based approach to health requires that health policy and programmes must prioritize the needs of those furthest behind first towards greater equity, a principle that has been echoed in the recently adopted Agenda for Sustainable Development and Universal Health Coverage. Non-discrimination and equality requires states to take steps to redress any discriminatory law, practice or policy.

Another feature of rights-based approaches is meaningful participation. Participation means ensuring that national stakeholders — including non-state actors such as non-governmental organizations — are meaningfully involved in all phases of programming: assessment, analysis, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. Focus on disadvantaged populations Disadvantage and marginalization serve to exclude certain populations in societies from enjoying good health.

Violations of human rights in health Violations or lack of attention to human rights can have serious health consequences. Human rights-based approaches A human rights-based approach to health provides a set of clear principles for setting and evaluating health policy and service delivery, targeting discriminatory practices and unjust power relations that are at the heart of inequitable health outcomes. Core principles of human rights Accountability States and other duty-bearers are answerable for the observance of human rights.

Articles of national Constitutions worldwide resemble that of the Declaration, often incorporating many of the rights inherent therein. As such, the Declaration had, and still has a remarkable impact on today's societies and states.

Is “Human Rights” a Western Concept?

Human rights are at the core of international law and international relations. They represent basic values common to all cultures, and must be respected by countries worldwide. Human rights are inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because he or she is a human being. The principle of equality and non-discrimination, as stipulated in Article 2 of the Declaration, is the cornerstone of the human rights protection system, enshrined in every human rights instrument, stipulating that;.

Among these states were, African, Asian, and Latin American countries. Thirty-seven states were associated with Judeo-Christian traditions; 11 Islamic; six Marxist; and four identified as being associated with Buddhist-Confucian traditions. While social and economic rights were placed on the agenda as a result of pushes from the Arab States and the Soviet bloc, respectively.

The case against human rights | Eric Posner | News | The Guardian

Forty-eight countries voted in favor with eight abstentions and the other two countries not voting. In proceeding years, Latin American and African countries, in addition to several European states, championed these rights through the establishment of initiatives and procedures for scrutinizing and reporting on human rights conditions and for advancing wide acceptance of human rights among diverse cultures all of which ultimately led to the present-day UN Human Rights Council and its special procedures.

The Story of Human Rights

By the mids, the number of countries participating in the process of constructing these standards had more than doubled. Both covenants were approved by unanimous votes of the General Assembly, which consisted of members at that time. In , for example, fourteen non-Western UN member states requested that the General Assembly include a discussion on the Violation of Human Rights in South Viet-Nam on its agenda, alleging that the Diem regime had been perpetuating violations of rights of Vietnamese Buddhists in the country.


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The appeal resulted in the first iteration of a special procedure, led by the Chair of the Commission on Human Rights. Similarly, in , a cross-regional group of states from Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and the Caribbean secured the adoption of two commission resolutions, establishing the first two Special Procedure mandates: the Ad-Hoc Working Group of Experts on southern Africa and the Special Rapporteur on Apartheid.

The special procedures mechanism was thus established. Both resolutions were adopted by a vote, with most Western countries abstaining. As noted by some experts , there is actual wide acceptance that global standards are necessary for domestic political institutions, and that actual or threatened violations of these standards are reasonable grounds for action from the outside.

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