An overview of literature was conducted on the 'right to health' for people with a mental illness, with a main focus on physical health. This included a review of key online databases for articles on the 'right to health', conducted for 2000-2010. This paper provides evidence on the poor health status of people with mental illness. It then considers international human rights legislation and their context, including tensions presented by mental health legislation in terms of human rights. Dimensions of the 'right to health', issues and obstacles to fulfilment of the 'right to health', and opportunities and obstacles in the Australian context are explored. There are many barriers to the recognition of right to health for the mentally ill. However, the new UN Convention on Persons with Disability offers some hope for the 'right to health' to be considered through legislative review and national policy.
- Health and human rights
- Mental health and physical health
- Psychiatric disability
- Right to health