Every human has a right to the highest attainable standard of health, as enshrined in the WHO Constitution. A health system that provides timely, accessible and affordable health services is key to achieving this right. More and more countries are encouraging patient empowerment, placing patients at the heart of decision-making processes throughout the health system.

While patients may only be directly involved in some areas of a health system, they can suffer from corruption throughout the health system, as it impacts on the all of the services and treatments they receive. Patients can tackle corruption in healthcare by calling for more transparency and accountability in key processes such as procurement, and supporting community-monitoring initiatives.

However, patients themselves may also commit corruption, whether it is by underreporting their income, receiving subsidised care, or bribing healthcare providers to receive better care.