Is Access to Health Care a Moral Right?

The nature of healthcare presents an important topic to be discussed because the way of how society understands it can have a significant impact on health legislation with the lapse of time. Many people regard to access to healthcare services as an important moral right, and their position is based on the arguments related to the universal necessity of healthcare. At the same time, their opponents tend to think that access to healthcare is not a moral right in itself. To them, the use of healthcare services is nothing more than exercising the freedom of choice. Therefore, it follows from their arguments that the application of socialist principles to healthcare would not be effective for humanity.

Fair access to healthcare can be regarded as a moral right due to the significant impact that every citizen has on the economic development of society. According to individuals who do not support this point of view, access to healthcare should not be seen as a moral right, and, therefore, the government is not obliged to use a lot of its resources to provide healthcare (Nkomo, 2015). In this connection, some people suppose that healthcare should be based on capitalist principles. This approach to healthcare may be beneficial when it comes to pecuniary advantages, but the failure to recognize access to healthcare as a moral right is contrary to the principles of fairness and equality.

All people who live in certain countries somehow facilitate their economic development. This contribution is especially important when it comes to individuals who work hard and pay taxes. Even these people who do not have their own sources of income (such as children) participate in their countries’ economic life because they spend money on goods and services.

Finally, when discussing the nature of access to healthcare, it is necessary to understand that providing people with rights is aimed at promoting social justice. In the modern world, income distribution is not always defined by the extent to which the work of certain specialists is important for other people. If healthcare is not a moral right, it is appropriate that many people who perform meaningful activities but remain economically disadvantaged have limited access to healthcare services.


Kantek, F., Baykal, U., & Altuntas, S. (2015). Culture of nursing school: Students’ perceptions. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 174, 1207-1213.

Nkomo, N. (2015). Bearing the right to healthcare, autonomy and hope. Social Science & Medicine, 147, 163-169.

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