+ The right to health

The United States Supreme Court upholds the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

SECTION27 applauds yesterday’s decision by the United States Supreme Court to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The Act is President Barack Obama’s comprehensive health care reform legislation. It has the potential to enable the United States to achieve a goal that all countries, including South Africa, should strive toward: universal health care that is both high quality and affordable. In other words, quality health care for everyone.

The question for South Africans becomes: what lessons should South Africa take from this?

Read the entire statement by clicking “read more” below

Violent riots further affirm the need to protect the right to health at Lindela—yet Home Affairs idles.

12 June 2012

On 28 May 2012, a group of organisations wrote to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) to request that it urgently investigate the state of health and health care service provision at Lindela Repatriation Centre (Lindela).

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), SECTION27, Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR), and People against Suffering, Oppression and Poverty (PASSOP) requested a response from the SAHRC by 11 June 2012. To date, they have not received a response.

Recent reports of violent protests within Lindela add even further urgency and credence to the request and the need to ensure that health and health rights are protected. Therefore, the organisations are now making the request public.

Read the complete statement and the full request to the SAHRC by clicking “read more” below

Financial Crisis in the Eastern Cape Department of Health

May 30th 2012

Over the last two weeks SECTION27 together with our partners the Rural Health Advocacy Project (RHAP), TAC, Africa Health Placements (AHP), Rural Rehabilitation South Africa (RuRESA), the Rural Doctors Association (RuDASA) and the South African Medical Association have received many reports from health care professionals and activists within the Eastern Cape who are concerned about the rapid decline in service delivery in the province.

These reports chronicle a variety of issues including non-payment of staff, drug stock-outs and shortages of basic medical supplies, and point to widespread systemic failures in the management and financing of services in the province. Although the crisis has been devastating to all types of state health facilities in the province, the impact of delayed or non-payment of critical healthcare workers and the difficulties in replacing such essential staff is even more acutely felt in rural areas, where healthcare teams are small and extremely fragile.

This briefing note for the public and the media outlines the tenuous financial position of the department, based on official internal Eastern Cape Department of Health documents that we have obtained.

Read the complete note by clicking “read more” below.

SECTION27 intervenes in Aventis v Cipla on behalf of TAC

4 May 2012 The TAC National Council has resolved to seek admission in a legal dispute between the brand name drug company Aventis Pharma and the generic company Cipla, over a claim of patent infringement in respect of a drug…