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Unnithan, Maya (2015)
Publisher: Harvard School of Public Health
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects:
The impact of human rights interventions on health outcomes is complex, multiple, and difficult to ascertain in the conventional sense of cause and effect. Existing approaches based on probable (experimental and statistical) conclusions from evidence are limited in their ability to capture the impact of rights-based transformations in health. This paper argues that a focus on plausible conclusions from evidence enables policy makers and researchers to take into account the effects of a co-occurrence of multiple factors connected with human rights, including the significant role of “context” and power. Drawing on a subject-near and interpretive (in other words, with regard to meaning) perspective that focuses on the lived experiences of human rights-based interventions, the paper suggests that policy makers and researchers are best served by evidence arrived at through plausible, observational modes of ascertaining impact. Through an examination of what human rights-based interventions mean, based on the experience of their operationalization on the ground in culturally specific maternal and reproductive health care contexts, this paper contributes to an emerging scholarship that seeks to pluralize the concept of evidence and to address the methodological challenges posed by heterogeneous forms of evidence in the context of human rights as applied to health.
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    • ful feedback and to the anonymous reviewers for 16. H. Lambert, E. Gordon, and E. Bogdan-Lovis,
    • to thank Ali Yamin, Paul Hunt, and Flavia Bustrepoerspectives on evidence-based healthcarSeo,”cial Science and Medicine62/11 (2006), pp. 2613-2620.
    • for giving me the opportunity to participate in the 17. Lock and Nguyen (2006, see note 14), p. 185.
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    • 375/9730 (2010), pp. 2009-2023. note 3). 32. Lim et al. (see note 31), p. 2021. 47. Farmer (2005, see note 3), p. 217. 33. M. Unnithan and C. Heitmeyer, “Global rights and 48. A. Yamin, “Will we take sufering seriously? Re-lec
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    • titlement(Lsondon: Routledge, 2003); M. Goodale and S. gy, politics and ethics as anthropological pro(bLloenmdson:
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    • tion, 2007). 45. Discussion with Karina Kielmann, April 2015; F.
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