The Close Connection Between Classical Rights and the Right to Health, With Special Reference to the Right to Sexual and Reproductive Health
Medicine and Law: World Association for Medical Law 1999; 18(2-3): 225-242
Although several international and regional human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, give explicit recognition to a broad right to health, this right, at present, offers little real protection to interests in individual and community health, including reproductive and sexual health. This is so, the author argues, because the mechanisms now in place for supervision and enforcement of this and other "social human rights" are extremely weak. In these circumstances, better protection is available indirectly, through enforcement of certain "classical human rights," such as the right to life, the right to be free from inhuman and degrading treatment, and the right to found a family, that contribute to -- and depend upon -- realisation of a right to health.
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