Connect
MJA
MJA

The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the right to health: is Australia meeting its obligations to Aboriginal peoples?

Sophie Couzos and Dea Delaney Thiele
Med J Aust 2007; 186 (10): 522-524.
  • Sophie Couzos1
  • Dea Delaney Thiele2

  • National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation, Canberra, ACT.

Correspondence: scouzos@tpgi.com.au

Acknowledgements: 

This article is a modified extract from the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation’s submission (Feb 2007) to the Attorney-General’s Department’s call for comments on the Common core document forming part of the reports of State Parties, incorporating the fifth report under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the fourth report under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.12

Competing interests:

None identified.

  • 1. Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights. General comments. No. 14. The right to the highest attainable standard of health (Article 12 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights). E/C.12/2000/4. 11 Aug 2000. http://www.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cescr/comments.htm (accessed Feb 2007).
  • 2. Gruskin S, Tarantola D. Health and human rights. In: Gruskin S, Grodin MA, Annas GJ, Marks SP, editors. Perspectives on health and human rights. New York: Routledge, 2005: 3-58.
  • 3. Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Monitoring the economic, social and cultural rights. http://www.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cescr/ (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 4. National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation and Oxfam Australia. Close the gap: solutions to the Indigenous health crisis facing Australia. Melbourne: Oxfam Australia, Apr 2007. http://www.oxfam.org.au/campaigns/indigenous/health.php (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 5. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner. Social justice report 2005. Sydney: Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, 2006. http://www.humanrights.gov.au/social_justice/sjreport05/ (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 6. Beaver C, Zhao Y. Investment analysis of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Program in the Northern Territory. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Review: Consultant Report No. 2. Canberra: Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, 2004.
  • 7. Applied Economics. Returns on investment in public health: an epidemiological and economic analysis. Canberra: Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing, 2003. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/health-pubhlth-publicat-document-roi_eea-cnt.htm (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 8. Shi L, Starfield B, Kennedy B, Kawachi I. Income inequality, primary care, and health indicators. J Fam Pract 1999; 48: 275-284.
  • 9. Starfield B. State of the art in research on equity in health. J Health Polit Policy Law 2006; 31: 11-32.
  • 10. Shi L, Macinko J, Starfield B, et al. Primary care, infant mortality, and low birth weight in the states of the USA. J Epidemiol Community Health 2004; 58: 374-380.
  • 11. Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Third periodic report: Australia. E/1994/104/Add.22 (State Party Report). Implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. 23 Jul 1998. http://www.dfat.gov.au/hr/reports/icescr-iccpr/ (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 12. Australian Government Attorney-General’s Department. Common core document forming part of the reports of State Parties, incorporating the fifth report under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the fourth report under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Draft. Dec 2006. http://www.ag.gov.au/www/agd/agd.nsf/Page/Humanrightsandanti-discrimination_Humanrights (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 13. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing. Expenditures on health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, 2001–02. Health and welfare expenditure series no. 23. (AIHW Cat. No. HWE 30.) Canberra: AIHW, 2005.
  • 14. Urbis Keys Young. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander access to major health programs. Prepared for Medicare Australia and the Department of Health and Ageing. Sydney: Urbis Keys Young, 2006.
  • 15. National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Council, for the Australian Health Ministers’ Conference. National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health. Framework for action by Governments. Canberra: Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, 2003. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/health-oatsih-pubs-healthstrategy.htm (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 16. Dwyer J, Silburn K, Wilson G. National strategies for improving Indigenous health and health care. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Review: Consultant Report No. 1. Canberra: Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, 2004.
  • 17. Access Economics Pty Ltd. Indigenous health workforce needs. Canberra: Australian Medical Association, Jul 2004.
  • 18. Econotech Pty Ltd. Costings models for Aboriginal and TSI health services. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia, 2004.
  • 19. Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework – 2006 Report. Canberra: AHMAC, 2006. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/health-oatsih-pubs-framereport (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 20. Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Annual Report 2005–06. Canberra: Department of Health and Ageing, 2006. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/2005-2006-2 (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 21. Steering Committee for the Review of Government Service Provision. Overcoming Indigenous disadvantage: key indicators 2005. Canberra: Productivity Commission, 2005. http://www.pc.gov.au/gsp/reports/indigenous/keyindicators2005/ (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 22. World Health Organization Department of Ethics, Trade, Human Rights and Health Law. Consultation on indicators for the right to health. Meeting Report. 1-2 Apr 2004. Geneva: WHO, 2004.
  • 23. Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Manual of indicators to measure the Quality Use of Medicines component of Australia’s National Medicines Policy. 2nd ed. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia, 2002.
  • 24. Cass A, Cunningham J, Snelling P, et al. Renal transplantation for Indigenous Australians: identifying the barriers to equitable access. Ethn Health 2003; 8: 111-119.
  • 25. Coory MD, Walsh WF. Rates of percutaneous coronary interventions and bypass surgery after acute myocardial infarction in Indigenous patients. Med J Aust 2005; 182: 507-512. <MJA full text>
  • 26. Cunningham J. Diagnostic and therapeutic procedures among Australian hospital patients identified as Indigenous. Med J Aust 2002; 176: 58-62. <MJA full text>
  • 27. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and National Breast Cancer Centre. Breast cancer in Australia: an overview, 2006. Cancer series no. 34. (AIHW Cat. No. CAN 29.) Canberra: AIHW, 2006.
  • 28. Senate Community Affairs Legislation Committee. Estimates, 3 June 2004. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia, 2004: CA 107.
  • 29. Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Report on Commonwealth funded hearing services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Strategies for future action. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia, 2002. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/content/health-hear-client14.htm (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 30. Shepherd F, Battye K, Chalmers E. Improving access to cardiac rehabilitation for remote Indigenous clients. Aust N Z J Public Health 2003; 27: 632-636.
  • 31. Menzies R, McIntyre P, Beard F. Vaccine preventable diseases and vaccination coverage in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Australia, 1999 to 2002. Commun Dis Intell 2004; 28: 127-159.
  • 32. Couzos S, Davis S. Inequities in Aboriginal health — access to the Asthma 3+ Visit Plan. Aust Fam Physician 2005; 34: 837-840.
  • 33. Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council’s Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Working Party. Cultural respect framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health 2004–2009. Adelaide: South Australian Department of Health, 2004. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/health-oatsih-pubs-crf.htm (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 34. Council of Australian Governments. National framework of principles for delivering services to Indigenous Australians. COAG Meeting, 25 Jun 2004. http://www.atns.net.au/biogs/A002166b.htm (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 35. Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Third public health outcome funding agreements (2004–2005 to 2008–2009). http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/health-pubhlth-about-phofa-cwlthwide.htm (accessed Apr 2007).
  • 36. World Health Organization. Health and the Millenium Development Goals. http:// www.who.int/mdg/en/ (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 37. McMullan B. The case for establishing Australian indigenous development goals. 15 Sep 2005. http://www.craigemersonmp.com/node/20 (accessed Jan 2007).
  • 38. Australian Government Attorney-General’s Department and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Australia’s national framework for human rights. National action plan. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia, 2005.

Author

remove_circle_outline Delete Author
add_circle_outline Add Author

Comment
Do you have any competing interests to declare? *

I/we agree to assign copyright to the Medical Journal of Australia and agree to the Conditions of publication *
I/we agree to the Terms of use of the Medical Journal of Australia *
Email me when people comment on this article

Responses are now closed for this article.