Frustrated by what they perceive as insufficient federal legislative and executive efforts to address climate change, a group of young plaintiffs and other activists have filed suit against the federal government, citing a wide variety of health-related harms they have suffered because of the government’s inability to reduce carbon emissions.
The movement to legalize the intrastate sale of raw milk continues despite warnings from the FDA and CDC that its consumption is a health risk. Federal law prohibits selling or transportation of raw milk, but there is decreased regulation within states. In the first month of 2017, five states have already introduced raw milk legislation to allow or expand its sale within their borders.
Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) allow the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to authorize emergency use of unapproved medical countermeasures during emergency circumstances to combat threats that involve chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear agents. On January 13, the FDA issued final guidance for industry and other stakeholders on EUA of Medical Products and Related Authorities.
Across the United States, people are identifying mental health as an unmet need in their communities, and are beginning to devise strategies to promote mental health and well-being. Just as we have come to understand the role of the social determinants of health with respect to physical health, we have a growing awareness of the influence of the social determinants of mental health.
Some of the public health law issues that made headlines in January include President Trump’s Executive Order regarding the Affordable Care Act, policy changes to help unpaid caregivers, a state’s proposed law that would classify homelessness as a medical condition, and the effectiveness of laws requiring breathalyzer ignition systems for DUI repeat offenders.
Cross-jurisdictional data sharing requires the application of varying, and sometimes conflicting local, state and federal laws. These laws often present barriers and prevent the efficient and effective use of data to tackle important public health challenges. A national IIS cross-jurisdictional data-sharing memorandum of understanding (MOU) has been developed to help address these challenges and will be piloted in six states.
Health impact assessments (HIAs) can provide decision-makers with critical information on how a proposed policy or program might impact the public’s health. The Network for Public Health Law – Western Region recently collaborated with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) to explore and analyze opportunities to imbed health considerations and HIAs into environmental reviews.
Some of the public health issues that made news headlines recently include President Obama’s signing of the 21st Century CURES Act, tobacco 21 laws, FDA warnings to tobacco manufacturers and voter response to proposed marijuana laws and soda tax propositions.
For the past two decades, alcohol-impaired motor vehicle crashes have been responsible for approximately one third of all U.S. crash fatalities. Alcohol-impaired driving is a complex and persistent public health problem requiring multi-faceted legal solutions that address both the causes and consequences of impaired driving. Drug courts - particularly DUI, DWI, and sobriety courts - are designed specifically to protect safety while addressing the root causes of impaired driving.
In recent months, the federal government has redoubled these efforts by expanding on initiatives that improve access to treatment for individuals with substance use disorders (SUD). A key component of these efforts focuses on implementing and enforcing the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, which requires most health insurance plans to treat mental health and SUD benefits on equal footing with- medical and surgical benefits