IFHHRO | Medical Human Rights Network promotes health-related human rights, including the right to health. Our focus is on the important role of health professionals.

We believe that there lies a huge potential in the health professions that could be mobilized for the promotion and protection of human rights.

Featured Topic

IFHHRO’s online Human Rights for Health Workers training manual: training sessions in four languages


Steps for Change

How to use human rights to address problems in your own healthcare institution


Voices in the Field

Experienced professionals in the field of health on the role of human rights in their careers



Latest report of the Special Rapporteur: mental health and well-being

The latest report of the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dainius Pūras, focuses on the human rights imperative to promote social and psycho-social determinants of health, and how these structural elements intersect with the right to mental health promotion.  The Special Rapporteur presented this new report to the Human Rights Council yesterday (24 June 2019).

A key message from the Special Rapporteur is that the promotion and protection of human rights (specifically the right to health) are vital for securing an essential psycho-social determinant of well-being: quality relationships and social connections.  The Rapporteur emphasizes that connections between individuals, families, and communities are critical for the full and effective realization of the right to mental health.

Further reading

Report to the Human Rights Council

Factsheet summarizing the key messages of the report

Article about the report’s findings

Post on the Health and Human Rights Journal blog


International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict

Each year on 19 June, the international community commemorates the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict. The use of forms of sexual violence, including (gang) rape, forced prostitution and forced marriage, as a ‘weapon of war’ has severe consequences for those affected. Please see the new article in our Topics section on sexual violence in conflict, written by our volunteer Somaya Bahji.

Survivor-centred approach

This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the establishment of the mandate of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict. The most recent UN Security Council Resolution 2467 (adopted on 23 April 2019)  articulates a survivor-centred approach to the prevention and response to conflict-related sexual violence. However, unfortunately, the resolution left out all references to sexual and reproductive health and rights.

The latest report of the Secretary-General states the following health-specific services that are necessary from a survivor-centred approach:

  • clinical management of rape
  • psychosocial support
  • emergency contraception and safe termination of pregnancy
  • HIV testing and treatment.

Recently, IFHHRO has become a member of  the CRSV (Conflict-Related Sexual Violence) NGO Network in the Netherlands. This informal network is led by  IMPACT, Center against Human Trafficking and Sexual Violence in Conflict.

Source: https://www.un.org/en/events/elimination-of-sexual-violence-in-conflict/index.shtml

Go to Topics | Sexual violence in conflict


New issue Health and Human Rights Journal

The June 2019 issue of the Health and Human Rights Journal appeared last week. In this edition, there are two special sections: one on ethical and human rights issues in global health fieldwork, and the other on health and human rights in the United States.
Other topics discussed in the general articles section include:

  • the environmental rights of children
  • asylum medicine
  • people living with HIV and the Gambian HIV response
  • the elimination of tuberculosis in indigenous communities

Go to the table of contents