Human Rights-Based Approach To Disease Response Vital To ‘Leaving No One Behind’

Devex: Opinion: Leaving no one behind in disease outbreak response planning
Andrew Zapfel, senior associate for health at Palladium, and Dulce Pedroso, manager at Palladium

“…[H]uman rights must be at the forefront of all preparedness planning. … We need to look for examples of good practice beyond recent epidemic responses and apply the core principles that have, for instance, made human rights-based health policy a reality. These same principles of communication, transparency, and accountability also apply in emergency responses to help ensure that no one is left behind. … The focus of those managing disease outbreaks should be on saving as many lives as possible and preventing further spread of disease without sacrificing the dignity of the individual. Human rights-based approaches in response planning will help in this endeavor, bringing in multiple stakeholders to think through ways of ensuring transparency, communication, and promotion of accountability and engagement during and in the aftermath of disease outbreaks” (12/12).