Justiciability of the Right to Health in Chile

The right to health is a Constitucional right in Chile. Even though this right is not protected by the Constitutional Action for Protection (the most frequently used form of tutela, recognized in Article 20 of the Constitution), the jurisprudence of the last 11 years reveals that courts are admitting Actions for Protection to secure this right. In some cases, the protection is indirect, but in several it is direct. In the last three years, the Supreme Court has admitted several cases, ordering the State to pay for very expensive medication, bypassing the legislation that regulates the access to health services. This paper analyzes the Chilean jurisprudence, in particular the recent decisions of the Supreme Court, and discusses the kind of model of justiciability of economic rights that the Supreme Court seems to be installing in Chile, and also discusses its potential impact in public policies regarding healthcare.