Health as a Human Right (in Polish)

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Włodzimierz Galewicz


The subject matter of this article is the right to health as one of the moral rights granted to all human beings. In the first part, I provide an overview of selected international documents that consider health (or “the highest attainable standard of health”) a human right and, in the second part, I investigate the most significant commentaries on these documents. Accordingly, I attempt to bring out and arrange in an order the main ethical claims contained in these documents and commentaries, discussing such issues as the kinds of rights related to health, the conditions of access to health-related goods or the duties of the states implicated by the right to health.


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How to Cite
Galewicz, Włodzimierz. 2014. “Health As a Human Right (in Polish)”. Diametros, no. 42 (December):57-82.
Special Topic - Cross sections of bioethics
Author Biography

Włodzimierz Galewicz, Jagiellonian University

Włodzimierz Galewicz, professorInstitute of PhilosophyJagiellonian University
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CESCR [1990] – UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), „The Nature of States Parties’ Obligations – General Comment 3 (1990)” 5th Session, Geneva, 14 December, 1990.

CESCR [2000] – UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), „The Right to the Highest Attainable Standard of Health – General Comment 14 (2000),” 22nd Session, Geneva, April 25 – May 12, 2000.

CESCR [2008] – UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), „The right to social security – General Comment 19 (2008)” 39th Session, Geneva, 5–23 November 2007, 2008.

CESCR [2009] – UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), „Non-discrimination in economic, social and cultural rights – General Comment 20 (2009)” 42nd Session, Geneva, 4–22 May, 2009.

Goodman [2005] – Timothy Goodman, „Is There a Right to Health?”, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 30 (6) 2005: s. 643–662.

Hessler, Buchanan [2002] – K. Hessler, A. Buchanan, „Specifying the Content of the Human Right to Health Care”, [w:] R. Rhodes et al. (ed.), Medicine and Social Justice, Oxford 2002, s. 84–96.

Kinney [2008] – E.D. Kinney, „Recognition of the international human right to health and health care in the United States”, Rutgers Law Review (60) 2008, s. 337–381.

Limburg Principles [1987] – The Limburg Principles on the Implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, U.N. Doc. E/CN.4/1987/17.

Mahler [1981] – Halfdan Mahler, „The meaning of Health For All by the year 2000”, World Health Forum 2 (1) 1981, s. 5–22.

Toebes [1999] – Brigit Toebes, „Towards an Improved Understanding of the International Human Right to Health”, Human Rights Quarterly 21 (3) 1999, s. 661–679.

Wasserstrom [1964] – Richard Wasserstrom, „Rights, Human Rights, and Racial Discrimination”, Journal of Philosophy 61 (20) 1964, s. 628–641.

Special Rapporteur [2007] – UN Human Rights Council, Report of the Special Rapporteur on the Right of Everyone to the Enjoyment of the Highest Attainable Standard of Physical and Mental Health, Paul Hunt, 17 January 2007.

WHO [1981] – WHO, „Global Strategy for Health for All by the Year 2000”, Geneva 1981.

WHO [2008] – WHO, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, The Right to Health. Fact Sheet No. 31, Geneva 2008

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