ALMA-ATA at 40: Civil Society Continues the Commitment to Health for All

Leigh K. Haynes and Julia Robinson With the Alma-Ata Declaration, the world committed to achieving “health for all by the year 2000”, designating this “a most important world-wide social goal.” It identified primary health care as the principal strategy to reach this goal and highlighted the necessity for action from not only the health sector but also other social and economic sectors (Section I, Section X). In the subsequent four…

ALMA-ATA at 40: Revisiting the Declaration

Audrey R. Chapman The fortieth anniversary of the Declaration of Alma-Ata comes at a time when primary health care is once again receiving some well-deserved attention.[1] Target 3.8 of the Sustainable Development Goals to achieve universal health coverage has energized many countries to make a greater effort to progress toward that goal.[2] Four decades ago the Declaration of Alma- Ata identified primary health care as key to the attainment of…

ALMA-ATA at 40: A Milestone in the Evolution of the Right to Health and an Enduring Legacy for Human Rights in Global Health

Benjamin Mason Meier, Maximillian Seunik, Roopa Dhatt, and Lawrence O. Gostin Forty years ago, the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF convened the International Conference on Primary Health Care on September 6, 1978 in Alma-Ata, USSR (now Almaty, Kazakhstan). With representatives from 134 states, this conference adopted the Declaration on Primary Health Care (known as the Declaration of Alma-Ata), through which delegates memorialized their agreement that primary health care was…

Gendered Power Relations and Informed Consent: The I.V. v. Bolivia Case

Martín Hevia and Andrés Constantin Abstract In a landmark decision handed down on November 30, 2016, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights analyzed the foundations of the right to informed consent. The court held Bolivia responsible for the forced sterilization of I.V., an immigrant woman from Peru, and recognized the importance of personal autonomy as a constitutive element of personality. This paper discusses the ethical foundations of the decision and…

Side Effects: Persecution of Health Workers in Nicaragua

Lori Hanson Dia de los Trabajadores de la Salud (Health Workers Day) on 9 August was a somber and bitter affair in Nicaragua this year. Rather than celebrating, the Nicaraguan Medical Association (AMN) marked the day recounting medical personnel affected by the ongoing political crisis in Nicaragua—the dead, the wounded, the persecuted, and the fired. Hundreds of medical students and health professionals have been affected—and countless numbers of patients stand…

The Rohingya in Cox’s Bazar: When the Stateless Seek Refuge

Abhishek Bhatia, Ayesha Mahmud, Arlan Fuller, Rebecca Shin, Azad Rahman, Tanvir Shatil, Mahmuda Sultana, K. A. M Morshed, Jennifer Leaning, and Satchit Balsari Abstract The Rohingya people of Myanmar have been subject to human rights violations through government-sponsored discrimination and violence. Since August 2017, an intensified assault by Myanmar authorities has resulted in a rapid increase of Rohingya pouring into Bangladesh, and the expansion of refugee settlements in the district…

Eradicating Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: Human Rights-Based Approaches of Legislation, Education, and Community Empowerment

Beth D. Williams-Breault Abstract Female genital mutilation/cutting is a form of violence against women and girls. It includes all procedures that involve the partial or total removal of external genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. It is estimated that over 200 million girls and women worldwide have suffered the effects of this practice and that approximately 3.6 million girls and women are at risk…

Child Labor in Global Tobacco Production: A Human Rights Approach to an Enduring Dilemma

Athena K. Ramos Abstract Tobacco production is a multi-billion-dollar global industry. Unfortunately, the cultivation of tobacco engages the labor of children throughout the world in extremely dangerous environments, which has both immediate and long-term consequences for children and society. This paper explores the human rights concerns associated with child labor in tobacco production by highlighting three countries—the United States, Kazakhstan, and Malawi—and examines the impact that the United Nations Convention…

Intersex Variations, Human Rights, and the International Classification of Diseases

Morgan Carpenter Abstract Over time, the World Health Organization (WHO) has reviewed and removed pathologizing classifications and codes associated with sexual and gender minorities from the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). However, classifications associated with intersex variations, congenital variations in sex characteristics or differences of sex development, remain pathologized. The ICD-11 introduces additional and pathologizing normative language to describe these as “disorders of sex development.” Current materials in the ICD-11…

AIDS 2018 – Debates Over Best Use of Global Funds

Sara L.M. Davis Steadily growing rates of HIV infection in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA) are at the heart of a debate roiling health aid at AIDS 2018. While US funding for the global HIV response increased in 2017, that trend is unlikely to continue and most other donors cut back, according to a new report from Kaiser Family Foundation and UNAIDS. The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB…