Legal Information And Rights Education As An Element of Care: A Promising Health Justice Strategy

Recognition is growing that health inequities in the United States are oceanic and that health justice matters. From COVID-19 crisis standards of care to vaccine equity to the eviction epidemic to the Flint, Michigan water crisis, widespread health injustices now are robustly, and appropriately, animating mainstream health policy dialogue.

Health justice is a critical concept and urgent goal, yet it remains a young and broad idea. Moving from theory to practice—and realizing all dimensions of health justice, not merely prioritizing “health care justice”—will take time as well as public and policy maker will. Public policy change, especially anti-racist policy change, is foundational and will take time to achieve, but there is much we can do to advance health justice now, especially since knowledge is power. Encouraging communities of care to integrate legal information and rights education is an important and underleveraged strategy to advance health justice.

Read the full article, originally appearing in the Health Affairs blog.