Photo: DFID

Operationalizing a rights-based approach to health service delivery (RBA-healthdelivery) is a joint effort by CMI, The World Bank Institute and Harvard University to develop a participatory methodology for operationalizing a rights-based approach to health service delivery. A rights-based approach means integrating human rights norms and principles in the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of health-related policies and programs. These include human dignity, attention to the needs and rights of vulnerable groups, and an emphasis on ensuring that health systems are made accessible to all. The principle of equality and freedom from discrimination is central, including discrimination on the basis of sex and gender roles. Integrating human rights into development also means empowering poor people, ensuring their participation in decision-making processes that concern them and incorporating accountability and transparency mechanisms that they can access.

A human rights approach to health is critical to address growing global health inequalities. Key elements of a human rights-based approach such as: Participation, Accountability, Non-discrimination, Transparency, Human dignity, Empowerment and Rule of Law, are core enablers of achieving health care services that are Available, Accessible, Acceptable and of High Quality for all (AAAQ).  These are key principles of a rights based approach to health care.

Building on previous and ongoing work, the RBA-healthdelivery project aims to facilitate co-creation by stakeholders in partner countries in the operationalization of RBA-health delivery tools, and to ensure that in doing so they have access to and actively engage with the best possible knowledge base. This includes findings from the project itself -internal research on impacts of such tools as that are being developed, thus enabling continuous improvements by bridging research and policy. The project also aims to develop a methodology for assessing impacts of RBAs in health services delivery operationalization.