Human rights in the new Global Strategy

Jyoti Sanghera, Lynn Gentile, Imma Guerras-Delgado, Lucinda O’Hanlon, Alfonso Barragues, Rachel Louise Hinton, Rajat Khosla, Kumanan Rasanathan,
Marcus Stahlhofer
BMJ 2015;351:h4184
Published online: 14 September 2015

Abstract / Resumen:

By recognising the centrality of human rights, the revised Global Strategy encourages some bold shifts in improving the health and well being of women, children, and adolescents, say Jyoti Sanghera and colleagues.
The Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health (2010), with its emphasis on participatory decision making processes, non-discrimination, and accountability, affirmed the importance of human rights. Despite important gains following its launch women, children, and adolescents continue to experience serious violations of their health and health related human rights, including discrimination in access to quality healthcare. A human rights based approach must thus be fully integrated throughout the Global Strategy. The right to health is recognised by several legal tools and treaties relating to human rights, including the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; the Convention on the Rights of the Child; and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. A human rights framework for realizing the right to health of women, children, and adolescents calls for national governments to ensure that health facilities, goods, and services are of good quality, are available in sufficient quantity, and are physically accessible and affordable on the basis of non-discrimination. Health facilities, goods, and services must also be acceptable— that is, gender and child sensitive and respectful of confidentiality and the requirement for informed consent, among other things. A human rights based approach is based on accountability and on empowering women, children, and adolescents to claim their rights and participate in decision making, and it covers the interrelated determinants of health and wellbeing (box). Because a human rights based approach promotes holistic responses, rather than fragmented strategies, and requires attention to the health needs of marginalised and vulnerable populations, it is a valuable tool for improving health outcomes…

Keywords / Palabras clave:  Women’s Health, Child Health, Adolescent Health, Human Rights; Equity in Health

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