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“Is There a Right to Health Care and, if So, What Does it En

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joy okoro

on 2 December 2015

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Transcript of “Is There a Right to Health Care and, if So, What Does it En

About the Author
Legal Rights
Yes there are legal right, but there are different scopes and contents of legal right in different countries due to different designs of health care system. For example;
National health care : government provider (Canada)
Mixed public and private insurance schemes (Germany and Netherlands)
People now debate about the scopes of right to health care. this debate pushes moral deliberation about the rights into the forefront even where a legal right is recognized.
What Then is the Basis and Scope of Moral Right to Health Care?
The question is who should pay for the services? ( Daniels 1985)
Article Overview
Daniels argues for a strong right to health care, deriving it from John Rawls' justice principle of "fair equality of opportunity." He reasons that disease and disability diminish people's "normal species functioning" and thus restricts the range of opportunities open to them. Since people are entitled to fair equality of opportunity, and adequate health care can protect or restore their normal range of opportunities, they have a positive right to adequate health care.
Legal Vs Moral Rights to Health Care
Legal Positivists claims: there are no rights except those that are embodied in actual institutions through law
Legal Rights: In the U.S poor people without insurance coverage have no assured access to medically necessary service. Although by law, they cannot be denied emergency services.
Most people believe that legal entitlements should reflect what society is morally obliged to provide by way of medical services.
* A right to health care imposes an obligation on others to assist the right bearers in obtaining needed and appropriate services.
American political philosopher of science
Political theorist
Education: Wesleyan University and Harvard University.
He is currently employed at Harvard

Is There a Right to Health Care?
Positive Vs Negative Rights
Positive Right: Requires others to do something beneficial or enabling for right - bearers
Negative Right: Requires others to refrain from doing something , usually harmful or restrictive to right bearers
* A right to health care is a positive right as opposed to negative right
-Right bearers need 'fair share' of the entire right whether poor or rich.
-different people exhibits different views on who should provide resources for health care.
Theories of Justice and rights to health care
On some justice theories, there are little basis for requiring people to assist others by meeting their health care or other need
For Example
They believe that fundamental rights to property, including right to personal assets are violated if society coerces individuals into providing "needed" resources or skills
In this case people denied charity, have no right to it and have no compliant against people who act charitably in other ways
Most libertarians against health care suggest that such a right is a "bottomless pit"
There are strong utilitarian arguments in favor of governments assuming access to at least some broad range of effective medical services
There seems to be little utilitarian justification for investing resources would produce more net welfare when invested in other things.
* But some expensive medical assistance offered to people might not be cost beneficial. even longterm care especially for those who can not be restored to productive social activity.
As difficult as it is to support on utilitarian grounds, we still insists our health care system are obliged to provde such services.
Two points about a utilitarian framework for a right to health care are worth nothing
Recognizing a right to health care is compatible with recognizing limits and entitlements that result from resource scarcity and fact that there are competing uses.
Just what entitlements to services follow from a right to health care cannot be specified outside the context of a system properly designed to deliver health care on a way that promotes aggregate utility.
Equality opportunity and a right to healthy care
Diseases shorten our lives or impair our ability to function and are open and sometimes contagious.
Health care in all its form, aim to keep people functioning as close to normally as possible
since we are social beings, our normal functional abilities include emotional and cognitive function not just physical.
Health care thus preserves for us the range of opportunities we would have, given our talent and skills.
But health care is limited in two significant ways
1) It is limited because things such as the distribution of wealth and income and education also profoundly affect equality of opportunity.

2) Also, it restricts its claim to protecting normal distribution of talent and skills unmodified.

It aims to help us function as normal competitors, not strictly equal one.
What does a right to health care includes?
1) System relative entitlements:
A way of restricting health care scope while still recognizing its importance.
we cannot make a direct inference from the fact that a person has the right to health care to the conclusion that the person is entitled to specific health care need . Rather the individual is entitled to a specific service only if in the light of facts about a society's technological capabilities and resources limitations.
- The account does not give individuals a basic right to have all health care needs met. At the same time there are social obligations to design a health care system that protects opportunity through an appropriate set of health care service.

2) Effective treatment of diseases and disability.
Rights and limits on effective treatments
When a disease or disability has little impact on the range of opportunities open to treat as other conditions that are more seriously impaired opportunity.
Unfortunately the impact on our range of opportunity gives only a crude measure of priority we should give to a service.
In any health care system, then some choices will have to be made by a fair, publicly accountable, decision making process.
"Is There a Right to Health Care and If so, What does it Encompass?"
Norman Daniels

presented by

Joy Okoro

Work citation
Bioethics, Principles, Issues, and Cases. 2nd ed. Edited by Lewis Vaughn. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013

Bioethics, Principles, issues, and cases. 2nd ed. Edited by Lewis Vaughn. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
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