The law and the public's health: A study of infectious disease law in the United States

Lawrence O. Gostin, Scott Burris, Zita Lazzarini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Law plays crucial roles in the field of public health, from defining the power and jurisdiction of health agencies, to influencing the social norms that shape individual behavior. Despite its importance, public health law has been neglected. Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine issued a report lamenting the state of public health adminstration, generally, and calling, in particular, for a revision of public health statutes. The Article examines the current state of public health law. To help create the conditions in which people can be healthy, public health law must reflect an understanding of how public health agencies work to promote health, as well as the political and social contexts in which these agencies operate. The authors first discuss three prevailing ways in which the determinants of health are conceptualized, and the political and social problems each model tends to create for public health efforts. The analysis then turns to the core functions of public health, emphasizing how law furthers public health work. The Article reports the results of a fifty-state survey of communicable disease control law, revealing that few states have systematically reformed their laws to reflect contemporary medical and legal developments. The Article concludes with specific guidelines for law reform.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59
Number of pages1
JournalColumbia Law Review
Volume99
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1999
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

contagious disease
public health
Law
health law
public law
health
communicable disease
law reform
Social Norms
role play
Social Problems
statute
jurisdiction
medicine
determinants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law

Cite this

The law and the public's health : A study of infectious disease law in the United States. / Gostin, Lawrence O.; Burris, Scott; Lazzarini, Zita.

In: Columbia Law Review, Vol. 99, No. 1, 01.1999, p. 59.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Gostin, LO, Burris, S & Lazzarini, Z 1999, 'The law and the public's health: A study of infectious disease law in the United States', Columbia Law Review, vol. 99, no. 1, pp. 59.
Gostin, Lawrence O. ; Burris, Scott ; Lazzarini, Zita. / The law and the public's health : A study of infectious disease law in the United States. In: Columbia Law Review. 1999 ; Vol. 99, No. 1. pp. 59.
@article{f729a5d2c69d40b1b28922190c41cb30,
title = "The law and the public's health: A study of infectious disease law in the United States",
abstract = "Law plays crucial roles in the field of public health, from defining the power and jurisdiction of health agencies, to influencing the social norms that shape individual behavior. Despite its importance, public health law has been neglected. Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine issued a report lamenting the state of public health adminstration, generally, and calling, in particular, for a revision of public health statutes. The Article examines the current state of public health law. To help create the conditions in which people can be healthy, public health law must reflect an understanding of how public health agencies work to promote health, as well as the political and social contexts in which these agencies operate. The authors first discuss three prevailing ways in which the determinants of health are conceptualized, and the political and social problems each model tends to create for public health efforts. The analysis then turns to the core functions of public health, emphasizing how law furthers public health work. The Article reports the results of a fifty-state survey of communicable disease control law, revealing that few states have systematically reformed their laws to reflect contemporary medical and legal developments. The Article concludes with specific guidelines for law reform.",
author = "Gostin, {Lawrence O.} and Scott Burris and Zita Lazzarini",
year = "1999",
month = "1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "99",
pages = "59",
journal = "Columbia Law Review",
issn = "0010-1958",
publisher = "Columbia Law Review Association",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The law and the public's health

T2 - A study of infectious disease law in the United States

AU - Gostin, Lawrence O.

AU - Burris, Scott

AU - Lazzarini, Zita

PY - 1999/1

Y1 - 1999/1

N2 - Law plays crucial roles in the field of public health, from defining the power and jurisdiction of health agencies, to influencing the social norms that shape individual behavior. Despite its importance, public health law has been neglected. Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine issued a report lamenting the state of public health adminstration, generally, and calling, in particular, for a revision of public health statutes. The Article examines the current state of public health law. To help create the conditions in which people can be healthy, public health law must reflect an understanding of how public health agencies work to promote health, as well as the political and social contexts in which these agencies operate. The authors first discuss three prevailing ways in which the determinants of health are conceptualized, and the political and social problems each model tends to create for public health efforts. The analysis then turns to the core functions of public health, emphasizing how law furthers public health work. The Article reports the results of a fifty-state survey of communicable disease control law, revealing that few states have systematically reformed their laws to reflect contemporary medical and legal developments. The Article concludes with specific guidelines for law reform.

AB - Law plays crucial roles in the field of public health, from defining the power and jurisdiction of health agencies, to influencing the social norms that shape individual behavior. Despite its importance, public health law has been neglected. Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine issued a report lamenting the state of public health adminstration, generally, and calling, in particular, for a revision of public health statutes. The Article examines the current state of public health law. To help create the conditions in which people can be healthy, public health law must reflect an understanding of how public health agencies work to promote health, as well as the political and social contexts in which these agencies operate. The authors first discuss three prevailing ways in which the determinants of health are conceptualized, and the political and social problems each model tends to create for public health efforts. The analysis then turns to the core functions of public health, emphasizing how law furthers public health work. The Article reports the results of a fifty-state survey of communicable disease control law, revealing that few states have systematically reformed their laws to reflect contemporary medical and legal developments. The Article concludes with specific guidelines for law reform.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0032620690&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0032620690&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

C2 - 10558403

AN - SCOPUS:0032620690

VL - 99

SP - 59

JO - Columbia Law Review

JF - Columbia Law Review

SN - 0010-1958

IS - 1

ER -