The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the UN Human Rights Council provides a unique forum for member States to provide recommendations to their peer States on all aspects of human rights, including the right to health. This brief provides an overview of the key characteristics of the UPR, as well as the ways in which health-rights advocates can engage in this process in support of the health-related goals of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This Policy Brief published by the World Health Organization (WHO), and lead authored by MDP Assistant Director Dr. Raymond Smith, examines opportunities for engagement by health-rights advocates in the UPR.
The Policy Brief accompanies the larger study by the University of Essex (UK) to which he contributed entitled Advancing the right to health through the Universal Periodic Review: A review of health under the first cycle of the Universal Periodic Review. The study analyzes the extent to which health was addressed during the first two cycles of the UPR. It asks what could be done to increase the UPR’s influence on the right to health, and what role UN Specialized Agencies such as WHO might play. It is written primarily for health and human rights advocates, activists and policy makers. In conjunction with this study, Smith also co-authored an article for the Bulletin of the World Health Organization entitled "Monitoring the sustainable development goals through human rights accountability reviews."