The Program on Global Health & Human Rights at the USC Institute for Global Health provided technical assistance to the World Health Organization and other partners as they coordinated research to help define the obligations of states and other actors regarding children’s right to health.
Interpreting the Child’s Right to Health
The output of this process was a “General Comment” on children’s right to health. Issued by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child; this serves as an authoritative interpretation of the child’s right and clarifies priority areas for government action across a range of topics, such as child mortality, nutrition and access to sexual and reproductive health information and services for adolescents.
Building on this, the USC program played a key role in the technical, political and practical processes surrounding a landmark Human Rights Council resolution, including developing technical guidance for the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to help governments use human rights and to ensure their regulatory environments are supportive to maternal, newborn and child health programs.
Preventing Child Mortality and Morbidity
The Program on Global Health & Human Rights continued this work through research of the linkages between human rights and child mortality and morbidity to inform the work of the Human Rights Council.
In partnership with the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights and the World Health Organization, this included assembling leading experts to review the impacts of human rights-based approaches on newborn, infant, and under-five child mortality and morbidity. The USC team compiled existing evidence to help frame the June 2017 discussion and produced a final report.
- Years Active: 2013 – 2019
- Investigator: Laura Ferguson
- Funder: UN Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights
- Collaborator: World Health Organization
- Location: Geneva, Switzerland
Reports & Related Work
- Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, 2015: Follow-up report on the application of the technical guidance on the application of a human rights-based approach to the implementation of policies and programmes to reduce preventable maternal mortality and morbidity
- United Nations General Assembly, 2014: Technical Guidance on the application of a human rights-based approach to the implementation of policies and programmes to reduce and eliminate preventable mortality and morbidity of children under 5 years of age
- Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, 2013: Mortality among children under five years of age as a human rights concern
- United Nations Convention of the Child, 2013: General comment No. 15 (2013) on the right of the child to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health
- United Nations General Assembly, 2012: Technical guidance on the application of a human rights-based approach to the implementation of policies and programmes to reduce preventable maternal morbidity and mortality