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Entitled to Health? Social Protection in Chile's Plan AUGE

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In theory everyone has the right to health. However, in reality many low income households are unable to fully access health services and therefore cannot fully claim their rights. Recently, in an attempt to overcome these limitations, health reforms in Chile under the Plan AUGE have proposed a series of legal entitlements to health care that are available to everyone regardless of income level. While this is an important starting point in ensuring more universal access to health, the process has raised a number of important issues, particularly on how these entitlements have been defined and how far they will be able to transform (gender) inequalities within the health system. Looking at this from a gender perspective enables us to see that despite the shift from a health care system based on redistributive rights towards one based on the right of recognition, certain sectors of the population remain excluded. Decision-making processes have remained technocratic, and women's groups have been marginalized from the debate around the reform. Moreover, health policy makers continue to ignore the role of the unpaid care economy in health care provision. The current reform has served to reinforce the gender roles around health care.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-09-01

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