Network Report


Public Health Law and Policy Perspectives

Implementing the Affordable Care Act—Community Health Needs Assessments

In this Q&A, Gene Matthews, Director of the Network’s Southeastern Region Office, outlines community health needs assessment (CHNA) efforts in North Carolina, how CHNA partners were able to collaborate on the theme of healthy weight, and the challenges faced by local health departments, hospitals and community partners.

VDOT Toolkit: Practice Guidelines and Legal Considerations

There is growing interest among local health departments to utilize video directly observed therapy (VDOT) for the treatment of tuberculosis (TB), in which health care providers observe patients taking their TB medication remotely via a webcam, smartphone, or videophone. The Minnesota Department of Health recently released a VDOT toolkit, containing practice guidelines and information on reimbursement law and other legal issues, which may help health departments interested in implementing VDOT.


Guide to Adding Conditions to State Newborn Screening Panels

Newborn screening is the practice of screening babies prior to hospital discharge for certain harmful or potentially fatal metabolic and genetic conditions that are not otherwise apparent at birth. Though technology has made it possible to screen for an increasing number of conditions, evidence does not support screening for all detectable disorders. This resource contains guidance for decision makers to assess the value and feasibility of adding a condition/s to the state’s newborn screening panel.

Upcoming Webinar

Addressing Socioeconomic Barriers to Health Equity through Law: A Preview of the 2016 Public Health Law Conference

Social and economic disadvantages create barriers to good health ― factors such as unsafe housing, exposure to toxic substances, and limited access to care can negatively impact the health of individuals and communities for generations. Laws and policies can contribute to barriers, but can also be used to advance health equity. In this April 21 webinar, which previews three sessions from the upcoming 2016 Public Health Law Conference, panelists will discuss the conditions that led to Flint water crisis, explore issues in healthy and safe housing, and examine the connection between jails and mental health.

Ask the Experts

Immunity for Administration of Epinephrine

Epinephrine, also known as adrenaline, is often sold under the brand name EpiPen. It is used to treat a number of conditions, including anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction). A requestor recently asked the Network if the state of Illinois provides immunity for those who administer epinephrine in emergency situations.

2016 Public Health Law Conference

Pre-Conference Workshops Announced

Three pre-conference workshops are scheduled for the September Public Health Law Conference. Space is limited, so register now!

  • De-Identification of Health Data: Law and Practice
  • Hands-On Methods Training in Policy Surveillance
  • Best Practices in Public Health Law Teaching

Worth Sharing

Advocacy for Leaders: Crafting Richer Stories for Public Health

In this article published in the Journal of Health Management & Practice, authors argue that public health has “tended to frame its policy arguments through the lens of liberal values for the last few decades,” thereby missing the opportunity to appeal to a broader spectrum of moral values. The article examines research on the differences in moral concerns between people who consider themselves political liberals and conservatives, and explores ways in which richer stories can be told about public health.

County Health Rankings & Roadmaps

The annual County Health Rankings measure vital health factors including high school graduation rates, obesity, smoking, unemployment, access to healthy foods, air quality and more. These annual Rankings provide a snapshot of how health is influenced by where we live, learn, work and play, and provide a starting point for communities to move from education to action. The newly released 2016 County Health Rankings provides an easy to use picture comparing the overall health of nearly every county in the nation.

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