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National Student Program

Join PHR’s National Student Program and register your school’s chapter.

PHR’s National Student Program engages medical students and other young health professionals from across the United States who are interested in the intersection of health and human rights. The program provides medical students with the necessary resources and training to develop the skills and experience required to advocate for human rights.

Students organize local, direct actions on human rights issues; raise awareness on their campuses, in local communities, and in the media; organize educational events; and urge elected officials to take action through lobby days and by responding to PHR action alerts. PHR student chapters on medical school campuses represent every region of the country, indicating sincere interest in the intersection of health and human rights among young people. Since they represent the next generation of medical professionals, PHR is fortunate to have such a vibrant community of students interested in using their skills to support rights for all.

PHR collaborates with the student chapters through on-campus trainings in human rights at PHR’s asylum clinics at select universities, and by participating in national student conferences. Each chapter has its own set of leaders and organizes awareness-raising activities, educational events, and actions to promote human rights. Students are encouraged to develop their own projects in consultation with the national office, and all PHR chapters are encouraged to seek recognition from their university to facilitate the promotion of human rights education in their training as health professionals. You can learn more about the student program by visiting their website.

The program is overseen by PHR’s National Student Advisory Board. Members of the board bring a diverse range of experience and backgrounds to the program.

The program has created PHR Toolkits to provide students with relevant information and tools:

Landmark Child Rape Case in Congo Goes to Court (November 9, 2017)

Today, in the small village of Kavumu in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), 18 defendants are set to go on trial for the systematic rape of 46 young children over a period of four years. The case represents a landmark step in the fight against rape in Congo, a country marked by widespread sexual violence for decades. Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) – along with TRIAL International, Panzi Hospital, and a host of Congolese partners – has worked to ensure evidence as well as survivors’ testimony will come to light in an open justice proceeding

Joint Statement on Kavumu From PHR, TRIAL International, and Panzi Hospital (November 2, 2017)

In the village of Kavumu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), families once endured the unspeakable: children abducted in the night and raped. Nearly five years after the first attacks and after an international mobilization of supporters, a trial to prosecute the alleged offenders will begin on Monday, November 6. Eighteen suspects will face charges, including a local politician. The trial will be a turning point for the fight against impunity in DRC, and civil society both locally and internationally played a decisive role in bringing about this historic moment.

Unnecessary Surgery on Intersex Children Must Stop (October 20, 2017)

Physicians for Human Rights calls for an end to all medically unnecessary surgical procedures that seek to alter gonads, genitals, or internal sex organs of intersex children, or those born with atypical sex characteristics,

PHR Documents Worst String of Hospital Attacks in Syria Since April (September 27, 2017)

Over the past week, Syrian government forces or their Russian allies have launched at least five aerial attacks on three of the main hospitals in Syria’s Idlib governorate, the most concentrated string of hospital attacks Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) has verified in Syria since April.

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“Our Work Isn’t Finished Yet” (October 9, 2017)

Twenty years after the global ban on landmines

Reconciliation and Justice in Northern Iraq (September 26, 2017)

I still remember it vividly. Just over three years ago, in August 2014, I woke up to the news that ISIS – also known as the Islamic State – had launched unprecedented, orchestrated attacks on Yazidi villages in Northern Iraq. Being from Syria, a country plagued by ISIS, I knew very well how ruthless these fighters are. But what happened to the Yazidis exceeded my most pessimistic predictions.

Defending Health Care is at the Heart of the Human Rights Agenda (September 18, 2017)

As ambassadors, foreign ministers, and heads of state gather in New York this week for the opening of the United Nations General Assembly, hundreds of critical global issues and vital events vie for their attention. Terror and nuclear proliferation. Development goals and climate change. Reforming the UN itself, its meetings and its budgets. Refugees.

Human Rights Trailblazer at 100 (September 15, 2017)

In September, Physicians for Human Rights celebrated the 100th birthday of one of our co-founders, Dr. Carola Eisenberg. With a career spanning well over five decades, Dr. Eisenberg has been a trailblazing physician and human rights advocate.

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PHR and partners appeal to Kenya to curb election-linked police rape and violence (October 2017)

PHR called on the Kenyan government to take all measures to stop police from raping and assaulting civilians as they vote in presidential elections today, and to ensure access to medical care for any survivors of violence.

Unnecessary Surgery on Intersex Children Must Stop (October 2017)

Physicians for Human Rights calls for an end to all medically unnecessary surgical procedures that seek to alter gonads, genitals, or internal sex organs of intersex children, or those born with atypical sex characteristics.

Letter to Secretary of Health Republic of the Philippines (July 2017)

PHR urges Philippines Secretary of Health to undertake a prompt, fair, and impartial investigation into claims of medical complicity, and take all measures necessary to ensure that no health staff or health systems under their authority take part in human rights abuses.

Neither Justice nor Treatment (June 2017)

Drug courts in the United States routinely fail to provide adequate, medically-sound treatment for substance use disorders, with treatment plans that are at times designed and facilitated by individuals with little to no medical training. In this report, Physicians for Human Rights shows how drug courts – designed to reduce incarceration and provide necessary treatment – struggle to meet medical and human rights standards.

More -General Research »