Human rights in healthcare during COVID-19 and other pandemics

Call for papers for: International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare

Guest Editors:

Jan Michael Alexandre C Bernadas
De La Salle University Manila
[email protected]

Lee Edson P Yarcia
Alliance for Improving Health Outcomes
[email protected]


COVID-19 is an ongoing pandemic that has claimed an estimated 53,000 lives and infected over a million people (Regencia & Siddiqui, 2020 April). First detected in China in December 2019, COVID-19  has spread throughout Asia (Iran having the highest number of deaths next to China), Europe (Italy with the highest death toll at 13,915), and North America (United States with the highest number of deaths at 5,926) (Wood, Adeline, & Talbot, 2020 March).

Situated in the context of COVID-19, this special issue is one of the few issues to offer a space for discussing challenges of, and opportunities for, human rights in healthcare from various stakeholders and for promoting different perspectives and levels of analysis from various countries. 

There are vibrant discussions on human rights and COVID-19 in the academe, human rights networks, and international organisations, among others, and this special issue will be a timely platform for understanding human rights issues in the context of pandemics such as:

  • international law during the state of health emergencies
  • human rights-based responses of states
  • vulnerable human rights during pandemics, such as privacy rights and freedom of expression
  • the importance of health communication and shaping health behaviours in the general public
  • Governance reforms relevant to healthcare to address future pandemics


We welcome submissions to this special issue. Topics covered include (but are not limited to):

  • Communication and media in the context of human rights and healthcare (e.g., media and privacy rights of patients, framing of COVID-19 in the media, and the right to health information).
  • Vulnerable human rights during pandemics (e.g. freedom of expression, freedom from discrimination, freedom from arbitrary arrests, right against torture, cruel, and other inhuman treatment or punishment) and the scope of the health during state of health emergencies.
  • Human rights-based state practices during pandemics.
  • Civil society mobilization and activism for human rights during COVID-19 (e.g. practices of human rights organizations and watchdogs, experiences of volunteer civic organizations)
  • Ethical issues in healthcare practice and research during COVID-19

Deadline and submission details

The submission deadline for all papers is 1 September 2020
The publication date of this special issue is early 2021
To submit your research, please visit:

Interested authors should select (from the drop-down menu) the special issue Human rights in healthcare during COVID-19” at the appropriate step in the submission process, i.e. in response to “Please select the issue you are submitting to”

To view the author guidelines for this journal, please visit: