chapter  24
Health Security and/or Human Rights?
WithJoseph J. Amon
Pages 11

Acknowledgement of a right to the “highest attainable standard of health” as a normative standard was first articulated in the preamble to the 1946 Constitution of the World Health Organization. Rights to life, liberty, and security of person and the right to equal protection of the law also have an impact on health, and health status can impact upon the realization of these rights. While the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights is understood as central to the right to health, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights is understood to protect civil and political rights such as the right to liberty and freedom from arbitrary arrest or detention. The chapter examines extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB), drug dependency, and lead poisoning. In 2006, the emergence of a multidrug-resistant strain of tuberculosis, dramatically labeled “extremely drug resistant tuberculosis,” or XDR-TB, led to widespread media attention and fears of an untreatable, fatal, and potentially pandemic illness.