A leading expert on international health law told lawmakers Friday in Tokyo that provisions for preserving human rights should be laid down in new legislation being proposed for infection control.

David Fidler, associate professor of law at the Indiana University School of Law, said the right to accessible medical care, the right to privacy and the right not to be discriminated against because of infections should be written into the proposed law.

Fidler, who also works for the World Health Organization, made the comment while meeting with lawmakers of the Lower House Health and Welfare Committee, which is deliberating a government-proposed bill designed to replace the Infectious Disease Prevention Law, the AIDS Prevention Law and the Venereal Disease Prevention Law.

The three existing laws, particularly the Infectious Disease Prevention Law, enacted a century ago, have been criticized for completely lacking a viewpoint on the protection of patients’ rights. Some lawmakers have pointed out that the newly proposed bill still lacks such recognition.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.