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When People Come FirstCritical Studies in Global Health$
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João Biehl and Adriana Petryna

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691157382

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691157382.001.0001

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Legal Remedies

Legal Remedies

Therapeutic Markets and the Judicialization of the Right to Health

(p.325) 12 Legal Remedies
When People Come First

João Biehl

Adriana Petryna

Princeton University Press

In 1996, Brazil became the first developing country to adopt an official policy granting free access to antiretroviral drugs through its broad-reaching but ailing public health care system (SUS). In the wake of the country's highly publicized antiretroviral drug rollout, public health and care have become increasingly pharmaceuticalized and privatized, and the rights-based demand for drug access has migrated from AIDS to other diseases and patient groups. A growing number of citizens are acting within the state to guarantee their right to health, understood as access to medicines of all kinds, whether or not they are available in official drug formularies. This chapter examines the political subjects that emerge from this complex law–state–market ecology and shows how in this new chapter in the history of the right to health, the judiciary has become a crucial arbiter and purveyor of care and technology access.

Keywords:   Brazil, public health, global health, public health care system, antiretroviral drugs, health rights

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