Realizing the Right to Health Through a Framework Convention on Global Health?

Health and Human Rights, Vol. 15, pp. 1-4, 2013

Georgetown Public Law Research Paper No. 13-060

5 Pages Posted: 22 Jun 2013

See all articles by Eric Friedman

Eric Friedman

Georgetown University Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

Jashodhara Dasgupta

SAHAYOG

Alicia Ely Yamin

Harvard University - Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics; Harvard University - Harvard Law School; Partners in Health; Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) - Center on Law and Social Transformation

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

Date Written: June 1, 2013

Abstract

This article introduces a special issue of Health and Human Rights (volume 15, issue 1) that features articles exploring potential elements of and key questions and issues surrounding the Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH). The FCGH is a proposed global health treaty that would be grounded in the right to health, with the aim of closing domestic and global health inequities. It would set standards and ensure financing for health care and public health services, while also addressing social determinants of health. The FCGH would raise the priority of health in other sectors, ensure effective private sector regulation, and incorporate community engagement and special measures to support the needs and rights of marginalized populations. It would include a robust regime of monitoring and enforcement, one that balances global standards with national ownership and initiative. Articles in this special issue can be clustered around three topics. First, several address accountability for realizing the right to health, including through a proposed judicial mechanism based on the Latin American experience, utilizing human rights bodies and responding to the interdependent nature of all human rights, clarifying right to health responsibilities of pharmaceutical companies with respect to access to medicines, and addressing traditional medicines. Second, two articles address global health funding and governance. One proposes an umbrella mechanism to develop common standards for all financing mechanisms, and the other proposes right to health-based standards for global health organizations, including addressing for their interactions with other sectors and potential for right to health capacity building. And third, several articles explore the role of the FCGH in social mobilization, including its potential to support HIV/AIDS advocates and several specific ways the treaty could mitigate threats to continue progress of the HIV movement. Another of these articles emphasizes the importance of the process towards an FCGH being one that facilities popular mobilization around the right to health. In addition, an opening editorial to the special issue highlights the value of a treaty with an all-encompassing goal of the right to health and health equity, while a final article offers several risks to the FCGH that must be considered. Finally, we emphasize that the critical thinking and robust debates about the FCGH and how it can best ensure the right to health must continue. The process of developing the treaty must give voice above all to marginalized populations, who suffer most from the health inequities that the FCGH is intended to redress.

Keywords: global health, health inequalities, global health governance, global health priorities, international health responsibilities

JEL Classification: K00, K30, K39

Suggested Citation

Friedman, Eric and Dasgupta, Jashodhara and Yamin, Alicia Ely and Gostin, Lawrence O., Realizing the Right to Health Through a Framework Convention on Global Health? (June 1, 2013). Health and Human Rights, Vol. 15, pp. 1-4, 2013, Georgetown Public Law Research Paper No. 13-060, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2283313

Eric Friedman (Contact Author)

Georgetown University Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

Jashodhara Dasgupta

SAHAYOG

A-240 Indira Nagar
Lucknow 226016, Uttar Pradesh
India

Alicia Ely Yamin

Harvard University - Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics ( email )

23 Everett Street
Cambridge, MA 02155
United States

Harvard University - Harvard Law School ( email )

1563 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Partners in Health ( email )

641 Huntington Ave, 1st Floor
Boston, MA 02115
United States

Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) - Center on Law and Social Transformation ( email )

PO Box 6033 Postterminalen
Bergen, NO-5892
Norway

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States
202-662-9038 (Phone)
202-662-9055 (Fax)

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