April 1, 2005
What is Adequate Health and who is deserves the right to receive it?
Racism and Discrimination in Healthcare
Human Rights and Health
References and Works Cited
Throughout the world, in countries rich and poor, people have no access to basic physical and mental healthcare nor to immunizations from infectious disease. Some people have no access because they lack the resources to buy and the state does not provide it. Others may be able to afford healthcare but because there are no services available in their communities they must do without it.
In some countries because of discrimination or social stigmas such as a person¡¦s status as a prisoner, refugee, immigrant or a member of a lower class or caste they are deprived of this basic human right. However all people should have access to affordable universal healthcare. In a nation of such wealth and abundance, rights and freedoms, there is no justification for an individual to be without healthcare.
The ¡§right to health¡¨ extends to all things which promote health and well-being and prevent illness and disease, not just access to medical care. This includes, among many others, the right to education, food and shelter, to freedom from discrimination and persecution, to information, and to the benefits of science.
Every woman, man, and child has the human right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, without discrimination of any kind. Enjoyment of human right to health, is vital to all aspects of a person¡¦s life and well-being, and is crucial to the realization of many other fundamental human rights and freedoms. The United States is the only industrialized country in the world in which healthcare is not a right of citizenship. As a result, the United States has the worst healthcare statistics in the industrialized world.
Poor health and inadequate health care are often related to human rights violations; violation that under fulfillment of human rights are often due to poor health and lack of access to health care. The link is direct in the case of other basic social and economic human rights such as the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of oneself, and one¡¦s family. Nevertheless, poverty and lack of health protection are indirectly linked to failures to secure civil rights.
Some of the realizations of other human rights are not possible if an individual cannot maintain his/her own health. Most crucial health needs includes the prevention of stillbirths and infant mortality; the improvement of environmental and industrial hygiene, the prevention treatment, and control of diseases, with the provision of medical care to the sick.
Health and human rights are interconnected and the effects of violations of dignity and physical integrity on health (mental or otherwise) are as crucial as the effects of poor health on dignity. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) recognizes that ¡§The right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.¡¨ Governments have obligations to respect, protect and fulfill the right to health as well as other human rights. Health is central to the person the state¡¦s commitment to the health of the population is a fundamental right; This is why today¡¦s Healthcare is believed to be the Fourth Inalienable Human Right.
Healthcare is further defined as ¡§all those activities intended to sustain, promote, and enhance health.¡¨ A few questions that are being raised in the local and state governments as well as...