• Chapter

Health and human security


Adhikari, D. (2013). Health and human security. In B. R. Upreti, R. Bhattarai, & G. S. Wagle (Eds.), Human Security in Nepal: Concepts, Issues and Challenges (pp. 119-158). Kathmandu, Nepal: Nepal Institute for Policy Studies and South Asia Regional Coordination Office of NCCR (North-South).


We live in an age of globalisation when the separation between national and international boundaries on the issue of health no longer exists. Today’s global flow of goods, services, finance, people and images spotlight the many inter-linkages in the security of all people. The security of one person, one community and one nation rests on the decisions of many others - sometimes fortuitously, sometimes precariously (UNDP 2003). Thus, the territorial concept of state governance has been gradually diminishing and replaced by global governance, which has created different dimensions in health and security issues in recent years. There is no dividing line between ‘foreign’ and ‘domestic’ infections.

As highlighted in Chapter 3, it is a fact that poverty lies at the root of many ills and that ill health, in its turn, has a devastating effect upon the survival, livelihood and dignity of individuals and the economies of both developed and developing countries (Figure 6.1). If we are going to break this vicious circle and ensure human security for the world’s people, we will have to make a major investment in public health in the developing world (Gutlove 2002).