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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Social Policy

Postgraduate Course: Health and Human Rights: Principles, Practice and Dilemmas (SCPL11019)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThe course will cover the right to health, rights-based approaches to health and ethical issues arising in the practice of global public health. Following an introduction to the principles, theories and international instruments, the module will then explore their application by means of five case studies. Each case study will allow students to critically examine a contemporary aspect of health and human rights, ranging from individual litigation, community empowerment, changes in government policy, to addressing ethical questions in global public health research. Students will be expected to work in groups and they will be assessed on the basis of a joint project report and a short examination.

The course will:
- Examine the theory of health and human rights, including international legal instruments and their relevance to health.

- Critically assess ways in which the right to health and rights-based approaches have been used to empower communities, change government policy through international legal instruments and by individuals, in litigation to gain access to treatment.

- Apply human rights principles to contemporary challenges in global public health via the use of case studies.

- Critically analyse the challenges involved in the operationalisation of a rights based approach to heath and in research.
Course description Seminars will be based on student led group work, focusing on applying principles introduced in the lecture to a series of case studies. Indicative content:

1 Introduction to course and health and human rights principles.
2 Human rights and health systems
3 Health Inequalities and Human Rights Impact Assessment
4 Women's rights and female genital mutilation
5 Global instruments in health and human rights
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
Aim: To provide students with an understanding of rights-based approaches to health and to enable them to apply these to the practice of global public health.
Reading List
Backman et al 2008 Health systems and the right to health: an assessment of 194 countries The Lancet, Volume 372, Issue 9655, Pages 2047 - 2085, 13 December 2008

Hunt, P., Backman, G., 2008. Health systems and the right to the highest attainable standard of health. Health and Human Rights, 10 (1), 81-92.

Gruskin, S. Grodin M, Annas G, Marks S ed (2005) Perspectives on health and human rights. Routledge: New York and London.

Gruskin, S., Mill, E.J., Tarantola, D., 2007. History, principles, and practice of health and human rights. Lancet, 370, 449-455.

Gruskin S, Ahmed S, Bogecho D, Ferguson L, Hanefeld J, MacCarthy J, Raad Z & Steiner R (2012) "Human rights in health systems frameworks: What is there, what is missing and why does it matter?", Global Public Health, DOI:10.1080/17441692.2011.651733

Braveman, P., Gruskin, S., 2003. Poverty, equity, human rights and health. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 81 (7), 539-545.

Csete, J., Cohen, J., 2010. Health benefits of legal services for criminalized populations: the case of people who use drugs, sex workers and sexual and gender minorities. Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics, 38 (4), 816-831.

Schrecker, T., Chapman, A.R., Labonté, R., De Vogli, R., 2010. Advancing health equity in the global marketplace: how human rights can help. Social Science and Medicine, 71 (8), 1520-1526.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Anuj Kapilashrami
Tel: (0131 6)50 3939
Course secretaryMiss Jade Birkin
Tel: (0131 6)51 1659
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