Special Rapporteur

The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to the highest attainable standard of health is an independent expert appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council. The Special Rapporteur is requested to gather information on the right to health, discuss possible cooperation with relevant actors, report on the status of the right to health throughout the world, and make recommendations on measures to promote and protect the right to health.

In order to fulfill this mandate, the Special Rapporteur submits an annual report both to the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly, undertakes official country missions, and receives individual complaints of alleged violations of the right to health.

The first Special Rapporteur, Paul Hunt, was appointed in 2002. The current Special Rapporteur, Dainius Pūras (Lithuania),  was appointed in 2014.  He is a Professor at Vilnius University, Lithuania, and has extensive expertise on the right to health, with a specific interest in child rights and mental health.

Guide for Civil Society

The UN Special Rapporteur has proven to be a valuable catalyst for further action within the health and human rights movement. Nevertheless, there remains much unawareness and misconception concerning the work of this independent expert. To bridge this knowledge gap we developed a Guide for Civil Society for those who wish to know more about the work of the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to health.

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Resources

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Agenda 2030 (2016) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/71/304
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Right to health of adolescents (2016) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/32/32
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Sports and healthy lifestyles as contributing factors to the right to health (2016) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/32/33
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Right to health in early childhood- right to survival and development (2015) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/70/213
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Work of the mandate and priorities of the Special Rapporteur (2015) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/29/33
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Effective and full implementation of the right to health framework (2014) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/69/299
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Unhealthy foods and diet-related non-communicable diseases (2014) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/26/31
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Migrant workers (2013) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/23/41
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Health financing (2012) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/67/302
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Occupational health, especially of vulnerable population groups (2012) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/20/15
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Development and the right to health (2011) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/17/25
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Criminalisation of same-sex relationships, sex work and HIV transmission (2010) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/14/20
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Drug use (2010) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/65/255
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The UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health: A Guide for Civil Society (2009)
IFHHRO

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Access to medicines, Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS and free trade agreements) (2009) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/11/12
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Accountability and human rights guidelines for pharmaceutical companies in relation to access to medicines (2008) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/63/263
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Health systems and the right to the highest attainable standard of health (2008) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, A/HRC/7/11
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Prioritization of health interventions and respect for human rights; impact assessments; and water and sanitation and the right to health (2007) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/62/214
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Access to medicines and the reduction of maternal mortality (2006) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/61/338
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The progress made in reaching the three objectives of the Rapporteur’s mandate and a human rights-based approach to health indicators (2006) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, E/CN.4/2006/48
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Health professional skills drain; the Commission on Social Determinants of Health, and human rights education for health professionals (2005) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/60/348
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Persons with mental disabilities (2005) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, E/CN.4/2005/51
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Health-related Millennium Development Goals; right to health for indigenous peoples; right to health, child survival and indicators (2004) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/59/422
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Sexual and reproductive health and rights; the link between poverty and health; neglected diseases; and violence prevention (2004) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, E/CN.4/2004/49
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Right to health indicators; good practices for the right to health; HIV/AIDS and the right to health; neglected diseases, leprosy and the right to health; and an optional protocol to ICESCR (2003) - Annual report to the UN General Assembly, A/58/427
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The three objectives of the Special Rapporteur’s mandate: to promote the right to health as a fundamental human right; to clarify the contours and content of the right to health; and to identify good practices for the operationalization of the right to health at the community, national and international levels (2003) - Annual report to the Human Rights Council, E/CN.4/2003/58
Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health

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