Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública
Print version ISSN 1020-4989
BOLIS, Mónica. The law and equity in health. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2002, vol.11, n.5-6, pp. 444-448. ISSN 1020-4989. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1020-49892002000500022.
What role does the law play in reducing inequalities in health that are unnecessary, avoidable, and unfair? The question is addressed in this paper, whose purpose is to examine how the legal system, as a regulatory agency of the State, contributes to achieving greater equity in access to and use of health-related goods and services. From the legal viewpoint, health is a public commodity that is critical to human well-being and survival. But in prioritizing health as a human right, the legal system is challenged with finding ways to make health equally accessible to all, while bearing in mind the particular needs of different groups. There are currently important gaps in health legislation in the Region that must be addressed if greater equity in health is to be achieved. Such gaps, along with potential ways to correct them, are discussed throughout the paper.
Keywords : equidad en salud; legislación en salud.