Erica N. White, J.D. is a Staff Attorney with the Western Region Office and a Research Scholar with the Center for Public Health Law and Policy at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University. She earned her J.D. at ASU in May 2021 and a B.A. in psychology from the University of North Texas in May 2016. She is a member of the State Bar of Texas.

As a law student, Erica worked with ASU’s Center for Public Health Law & Policy and completed externships with United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University.

Erica currently focuses her research on public health policy, emergency legal preparedness, constitutional law, administrative law, reproductive rights, and vaccine law. Erica is also an avid court monitor, regularly evaluating public health implications arising from federal and state court decisions.

Articles & Resources

Guidance: State COVID-19 Emergency Declarations

GuidanceCOVID-19Emergency Legal Preparedness and Response

March 13, 2023
by Erica White, James G. Hodge, Jr. and Jennifer Piatt

Since the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, every state, most territories, hundreds of tribal governments, and thousands of municipalities have declared various levels of emergencies. This document provides a comprehensive snapshot of the current status of various state-level emergency declarations issued in response to COVID-19 based on data provided by the National Governors Association, the Network for Public Health Law, and other sources.

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Science Denial and Public Health Law

Law & Policy InsightsMechanisms for Advancing Public HealthPublic Health Advocacy and Decision-Making

February 22, 2023
by Erica White

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, “science denialism” — including misinformation and disinformation — was rampant, engendering opposition to vaccines and other disease mitigation measures, as well as a backlash against public health officials. Combating the spread of misinformation and disinformation requires working with trusted community members and increased government efforts to disseminate clear public health information.

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Post-Dobbs Abortion Access Routes: A Primer

PrimerReproductive Health and Equity 

February 13, 2023
by Erica White and Jennifer Piatt

In light of the withdrawal of federal rights to abortion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization (2022) & restrictive state abortion laws, this Primer (1) describes a series of “open door” legal pathways to access abortion services in the U.S., (2) explains who may be able to utilize a specific pathway to access abortion services, and (3) delineates various actual or potential limitations related to accessing abortions via each pathway.

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Curtailing Implicit Racial Biases in Electronic Health Records

Law & Policy InsightsMechanisms for Advancing Health EquityHealth Data Sharing and PrivacyHealth Information and Data Sharing

December 14, 2022
by Erica White

It’s well established that individual and structural racism has led to disparities in the quality of and access to health care in the U.S. Recent studies show how medical records are another avenue through which bias and discrimination negatively impact care and further perpetuate racial inequities in delivery. Some states and organizations have taken steps to prevent racial inequities from percolating within medical records by issuing recommendations, publishing guidelines, or by mandating implicit bias training for those in the health care field.

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Abortion Access: Post-Dobbs Litigation Themes

Fact SheetReproductive Health and Equity Legislation and Legal ChallengesHealth and Health Care

November 4, 2022
by Erica White

Following the Court’s decision in Dobbs, some states have sought to provide greater or enhanced protections for abortion access. Other states, however, have initiated a series of measures to greatly limit or inhibit abortions. These actions include (a) implementation of pre-existing “trigger” laws banning procedures the moment abortion was no longer a federal constitutional right; (b) enforcement of decades-old laws banning abortion that were never repealed (following the Supreme Court’s initial decision affirming a right to abortion in Roe); and (c) passage of new statutes restricting abortions. This memo provides an illustrative discussion of key emerging themes from litigation challenging state-based anti-abortions laws or policies.

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Racial Disparities in Women’s Health

Law & Policy InsightsReproductive Health and Equity Mechanisms for Advancing Health EquityMaternal and Child Health

August 1, 2022
by Erica White

On June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court made a decision that disproportionately affects the lives of Black and minority women in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization: specifically, access to abortion is not a fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution. As a result of this decision, 26 states have already, or will soon, ban abortion with little or no exceptions, leaving approximately 33 million U.S. women lacking abortion access in their home states. Twenty-two states whose laws impose strict abortion restrictions collectively are home to 45 percent of Black women under the age of 55.

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Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization: The New Reproductive Health Landscape

WebinarsReproductive Health and Equity Health and Health Care

June 29, 2022
by Erica White and Jennifer Piatt

On Friday, June 24th, 2022, in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the U.S. Supreme Court held that there is no constitutional right to abortion, overturning Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. Attend this webinar to gain an understanding of the outcome and major themes revealed by the Dobbs decision, as well as potential impacts on additional constitutional rights. Learn about alternate key legal challenges to preserve abortion access, including challenges based in state constitutional language and federal preemption; and find out about current and emerging state-based actions designed to preserve and promote reproductive health.

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