Global health care injustice: an analysis of the demands of the basic right to health care

West-Oram, Peter George Negus (2015). Global health care injustice: an analysis of the demands of the basic right to health care. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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Henry Shue’s model of basic rights and their correlative duties provides an excellent framework for analysing the requirements of global distributive justice, and for theorising about the minimum acceptable standards of human entitlement and wellbeing. Shue bases his model on the claim that certain ‘basic’ rights are of universal instrumental value, and are necessary for the enjoyment of any other rights, and of any ‘decent life’. Shue’s model provides a comprehensive argument about the importance of certain fundamental goods for all human lives, though he does not consider health or health care in any significant detail. Adopting Shue’s model, I argue that access to health care is of sufficient importance to the enjoyment of any other rights that it qualifies as what Shue describes as a ‘basic’ right. I also argue that the basic right to health care is compatible with the basic rights model, and is required by it in order to for it to achieve its goal of enabling right holders to enjoy any decent life. In making this claim I also explore the requirements of the basic right to health care in terms of Shue’s triumvirate of duties and with reference to several key examples.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Philosophy
Funders: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform


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