The international community has made great progress in improving global health. But staggering health inequalities between rich and poor still remain, raising fundamental questions of social justice. In a book that systematically defines the burgeoning field of global health law, Lawrence Gostin drives home the need for effective global governance for health and offers a blueprint for reform, based on the principle that the opportunity to live a healthy life is a basic human right.
Gostin shows how critical it is for institutions and international agreements to focus not only on illness but also on the essential conditions that enable people to stay healthy throughout their lifespan: nutrition, clean water, mosquito control, and tobacco reduction. Policies that shape agriculture, trade, and the environment have long-term impacts on health, and Gostin proposes major reforms of global health institutions and governments to ensure better coordination, more transparency, and accountability. He illustrates the power of global health law with case studies on AIDS, influenza, tobacco, and health worker migration.
Today's pressing health needs worldwide are a problem not only for the medical profession but also for all concerned citizens. Designed with the beginning student, advanced researcher, and informed public in mind, Global Health Law will be a foundational resource for teaching, advocacy, and public discourse in global health.
Global Health Law brings attention to critical aspects of law that anyone interested in global health needs to be concerned about: the major sources of law, and the institutions relevant to implementing them…Gostin posits that the solution to major global health challenges lies in transforming global health law and global governance because of their potential to dramatically improve health and reduce inequalities.
Gostin here presents a persuasive and inspiring call to action for lawyers and legal scholars to harness their talents to the fundamental goal of health for all by utilizing human rights standards, international treaties and activist litigation…Global Health Law makes a compelling case that the law’s time in the march towards global health is nigh.
Gostin continues in his distinctive personal tradition of embodying both scholar and activist. In this regard, he advances a powerfully advocated thesis that stimulates many philosophical and political ideas. While some may wish to challenge aspects of his political conclusions, he has thrown down a gauntlet to anyone who would wish to side-line the imperatives that he identifies in relation to our responsibility effectively to achieve good global governance for health and improve life the world over.
Larry Gostin’s Global Health Law is more than the definitive book on a dynamic field. Gostin harnesses the power of international law and human rights as tools to close unconscionable health inequities—the injustices that burden marginalized populations throughout the world. Gostin presents a forceful vision, one that deserves a wide embrace.
The fight against apartheid in South Africa inspired a Constitution that guarantees everyone the right to health. Lawrence Gostin’s groundbreaking Global Health Law replicates that struggle globally, employing wider principles of social justice and international law. His book is rich in scholarship, and inspiring in its generous-spirited reach.
The fusion of human rights and social movements is a powerful theme running throughout Lawrence Gostin’s absorbing book. Global Health Law shines a light on the inspiration of the AIDS movement, bringing the ingenuity of civil society to achieve health justice for all.
- 560 pages
- 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
- Harvard University Press
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