“Participation and human rights: impact on women’s and children’s health. What does the literature tell us?,” in Women’s and Children’s Health: Evidence of Impact of Human Rights

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“Public health, medicine and human rights share a common goal: to improve the health, life and well-being of individuals, communities and populations. Moreover, they are deeply complementary. The right to the highest attainable standard of health cannot be realized without the expertise of health professionals. Equally, the long established objectives of public health and clinical care can benefit from the dynamic discipline of human rights.

Human rights, as well as the relationship between health and human rights, have matured greatly in recent years. Today, it is universally accepted that human rights include not only classic civil and political rights, but also economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to the highest attainable standard of health. This right, which is enshrined in the Constitution of the World Health Organization, is to be realized progressively and subject to the availability of resources. More than ever before, it is now understood that human rights can be used by health workers to achieve their professional goals. As human rights become more operational, they become more effective as tools to help governments strengthen their health systems, deliver health care for all and improve health. However, the right to the highest attainable standard of health, and other human rights, can only be made operational if health professionals and human rights experts work closely together and are ready to learn from each other.

These are some of the issues that this report explores in relation to women’s and children’s health.”

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Editors: Flavia Bustreo, Paul Hunt 
Section Authors: Laura Ferguson
, Emma Halliday
Published By: World Health Organization
Date: January 1, 2013
Publication Link: http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/84203/1/9789241505420_eng.pdf

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