Could a Constitutional Based Rights Approach to Health Service Delivery Lead to Better Health Outcomes? | World Bank Institute (WBI)

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013
11:15 AM – 12:45 PM | MC2-800

Watch the session (English/Spanish)

External participants should click here to arrange for a visitor pass and building entry. Please note that registration closes on November 8th.

The structure of a health system is a reflection of the values and principles guiding the functioning of a society. In this sense, it is the result of the contract that prevails in society, i.e. the result of the relationship between its members and how they incur responsibilities and exercise their rights.

The general questions that emerge from this context and that the session will address are: in concrete terms, what are the changes that the adoption of a rights-based approach would bring to a health system? Or in other words, how different would health systems function from what we know today, if they were to be engendered using a rights-based approach? Ultimately, could a rights-based approach help a country achieve better health outcomes?

This panel discussion is part of the Law, Justice, and Development Week 2013 organized by the World Bank Group

The moderator will ask questions in an interview format to gather the different perspectives and experiences of the panelists. These questions aim at provoking a frank, open but heated debate between them. The debate will later be open to the audience.

Maria-Luisa Escobar, Manager, Health Systems Practice, World Bank Institute


  • Albert G. Mulley, Director, The Dartmouth Center for Health Care Delivery Science, Dartmouth College
    Before becoming Director of the Dartmouth Center for Health Care Delivery Science in November of 2010, Mulley was the founding chief of the General Medicine Division and Director of the Medical Practices Evaluation Center at Massachusetts General Hospital, Associate Professor of Medicine, and Associate Professor of Health Policy at Harvard Medical School. His research has focused on the use of decision theory and outcomes research to distinguish between warranted and unwarranted variations in clinical practice.
  • Marc Roberts, Professor of Political Economy, Emeritus, Harvard School of Public Health
    Roberts has taught economics, statistics, ethics, management, environmental policy, and health policy at Harvard’s Faculty of the Arts and Sciences, Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Law School, and for 30 years, at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is author or co-author of numerous books and articles. A widely respected trainer and consultant in the U.S. and abroad, he has taught and consulted about health sector reform in more than 30 countries and on every continent except Antarctica.
  • Harald Thomas Schmidt, Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics & Health Policy; Research Associate, Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics, University of Pennsylvania
    Before Penn, Schmidt was a Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice at the Harvard School of Public Health, and Assistant Director of the UK’s Nuffield Council on Bioethics. His is also a member of UNESCO’s Ethics Task Force, and Chair/Spokesperson of the Ethics Section of the German Network for Evidence Based Medicine. His research interests are centered around personal responsibility for health, public health ethics, and fairness in resource allocation.
  • Rodrigo Uprimny, Executive Director, Center for the Study of Law, Justice and Society (Dejusticia), Colombia
    Uprimny is also director of the Masters of Law program at the National University of Colombia and has been a visiting professor at other Colombian and foreign universities. He was assistant judge of the Constitutional Court for 11 years, and an expert for the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. He is author of numerous articles on human rights, constitutional law, justice administration, and the tensions between law and economics.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
11:15 AM – 12:45 PM | MC2-800

External participants should click here to arrange for a visitor pass and building entry. Please note that registration closes on November 8th.

Live streaming will be availabe at with simultaneous interpretation in Spanish.  

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