Healthcare as Human Right?
Written by Editor   
Tuesday, September 26, 2017 04:05 PM

Healthcare is a basic human right and there should be a "publicly funded universal primary care program," according to resolutions adopted by the American Academy of Family Physicians Congress of Delegates.

The healthcare-as-right resolution stated that the AAFP "recognize that health is a human right for every person, not a privilege." It was amended to clarify “that the right to health includes universal access to timely acceptable and affordable healthcare of appropriate quality” and was passed with resounding applause.  Presumably, it is to be the medical community to determine what is deemed “appropriate.”

In addition, a resolution in support of developing policy language to support a “publicly funded universal primary care program” and to survey chapters about a “legislative approach to promotion" was also quietly adopted without any floor debate.

A resolution to repeal the so-called Hyde Amendment, the law banning federal funding for abortions, was brought forward for discussion on the floor at the request of Patricia Williams, MD, a delegate from Kentucky. If adopted, the proposed policy, sponsored by the California chapter, would have allowed the AAFP to endorse the idea that “women receiving healthcare paid for through health plans funded by state or federal government who have coverage for continuing a pregnancy also should have coverage for ending a pregnancy.”  Passing the resolution would also have authorized the AAFP to “engage in advocacy and lobbying efforts" to repeal the law.

The abortion resolution was referred for further study.