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The Right to Health at the Public/Private Divide
Colleen M. Flood and Aeyal Gross
Cambridge University Press, 2014
By Health and Human Rights communications assistant Gabrielle Tyson
Published April 7, 2015
The Right to Health at the Public/Private Divide broaches a subject central to the current American and global political debate: the right to health care. Flood and Gross put together a comparative study of 16 nations, divided into categories of health care systems which are public/tax-financed, social health insurance/managed competition, or mixed private/public. This allows readers to understand the differing role of rights in the health systems of a diverse group of countries, and the impact that litigation and legal action can have in the context of those systems.
Each country is analyzed based on its current health care system, and the legal instruments used to regulate access to health care. Examples of health litigation are provided for each country; the focus of each national investigation is the “equity gap” and either effective or unsuccessful use of litigation in closing that gap. In some cases, litigation is shown to widen the equity gap.
The editors conclude that the vast number and variety of legal cases must make courts consider resource constraints and the repercussions of questioning government decisions. However, it is also the duty of a court to consider the equity and fairness of health systems and to continually scrutinize actions which would reduce access to health care.
Judicial analyses of each nation’s interpretation of the right to health, paired with the editors’ thoughtful investigations make this book a compelling read for those interested in the intersection of health care and human rights.
Papers In Press
Europe’s Shifting Response to HIV/AIDS: From Human Rights to Risk Management
HIV, Hepatitis C, TB, Harm Reduction, and Persons Deprived of Liberty: What Standards Does International Human Rights Law Establish?
Gen Sander and Rick Lines
International Human Rights and the Mistreatment of Women during Childbirth
Rajat Khosla, Christina Zampas, Joshua P. Vogel, Meghan A. Bohren, Mindy Roseman, and Joanna N. Erdman
HIV and the Right to Health in Colombia
Corey Prachniak-Rincón and Jimena Villar de Onís
Transforming Policy into Justice: The Role of Health Advocates in Mozambique
Ellie Feinglass, Nadja Gomes, and Vivek Maru
Reproductive Health Policy in Tunisia: Women's Right to Reproductive Health and Gender Empowerment
Nada Amroussia, Alison Hernandez, and Isabel Goicolea
Letter to the Editor: Moving the Debate Forward in Right to Health Litigation
Octavio Luiz Motta Ferraz
Letter to the Editor Response: On the Heterogeneity and Politics of the Judicialization of Health in Brazil
João Biehl, Mariana P. Socal, Joseph J. Amon
Terminal Patients and the Right to Refuse Medical Treatment in Argentina
Martín Hevia and Daniela Schnidrig
Book review: Advancing Global Health and Human Rights in this Neoliberal Era
Harvard FXB Health and Human Rights Consortium Student Essay Competition:
Human Rights, Law and Abortion in El Salvador
Lessons from Jonathan Mann: The Ten Commandments on Multidrug-Resistant TB
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