Coronavirus (888) Proposals for right-based post-COVID-19 global health architecture

7 August, 2020

Dear All,

I am pleased to be able to share with you an article from Professor Larry Gostin at Georgetown University Law Center and myself calling for a post-COVID-19 rights-based global health architecture, one that would not only better stave off pandemics, but also redress the unconscionable health inequities that preceded COVID-19, and that the pandemic is only worsening. A short description of the article and its three core proposals, along with a link to the article, follows.

We encourage you to share the article. And if you wanted to engage with any of these proposals, please let us know (

Many thanks, and stay healthy,



Lawrence O. Gostin and Eric A. Friedman, “Imagining Global Health With Justice: Transformative Ideas for Health and Well-Being While Leaving No One Behind,” 108 Georgetown Law Journal (June 2020): 1535-1606.

The global failure to effectively contain and respond to COVID-19, along with the underlying inequalities and health system deficits the pandemic has exposed, demonstrates the need to reimagine and redesign the global health infrastructure. This need comes, too, from the vast inequalities within and across countries in health services and outcomes that have long existed, deep injustices that the pandemic will only exacerbate. A post-COVID-19 global health architecture should be grounded in the right to health. Three central instruments should be: 1) a Framework Convention on Global Health, a global treaty based in the right to health and aimed at closing health inequities; 2) health equity programs of action, systemic, systematic, and inclusive approaches to address health inequities domestically, and; 3) a Right to Health Capacity Fund, funding civil society right to health advocacy and right to health-based mechanisms for accountability and participation. If brought to fruition, these proposals, which would interact with and reinforce one another, would have a transformative impact on global health, greatly reducing health inequities - leaving no one behind in health in both ordinary and extraordinary times.

Eric A. Friedman, JD

Global Health Justice Scholar

O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

Georgetown University Law Center

Washington, DC USA

1-202-661-6603 |

HIFA profile: Eric A Friedman is a Project Leader, Joint Action and Learning Initiative on National and Global Responsibilities for Health (JALI), at the O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, DC. JALI is an international coalition aimed at developing a global health treaty – a Framework Convvention on Global Health – to close health inequities and better enaable people to realize their right to health. Before joining the O'Neill Institute, Eric was at Physicians for Human Rights, where he focused on HIV/AIDS, health systems, the right to health, and the global shortage of health workers. eaf74 AT