Rights should always be coupled with responsibilities. Some people agree by saying that "With greater rights and freedom comes greater responsibilities." That is one way of saying it; another way is "With greater (personal) responsibilities comes greater (personal/individual) freedom." As Friedrich Hayek said, "People who are afraid of responsibilities are afraid of freedom itself."
In many discussions on health policy, what is often asserted and formulated is that "health is a right" and hence, "universal healthcare is a right." I have no problem with this formulation if this should also be added, that "health is a responsibility", and I am referring to individual (and parental/guardian, civil society, community) responsibility, not just government responsibility as is commonly understood. Thus, "health is a right, health is a responsibility" is easily intertwined.
Below are three articles in BusinessWorld by one of my friends in the local health sector, Reiner Gloor, Executive Director of PHAP, on universal healthcare. I agree with many -- but not all -- of his arguments here. I can sympathize with greater government health support and subsidy for the poor suffering from infectious or communicable and tropical diseases. But I have little or no sympathy for government subsidy for lifestyle-related diseases like illnesses due to heavy smoking, heavy drinking, heavy eating of fatty or junk foods, heavy sitting or sedentary lifestyle.
Reiner is speaking from a private sector and civil society point of view, not government's. So these papers have a balanced perspective on the issue of universal healthcare.