Public Health Law Assessments
As part of its research activities, Center personnel have conducted “State-of-the-art Assessments” in public health law and policy. These assessments are comprehensive research reports that examine the intersection of legal, social, and public health issues on selected public health law topics. Assessments may include:
Surveys of federal or state laws, with charts or memoranda that describe the laws and provide necessary analysis;
  Discussions of the effects of the law based on general social science theory on the operation of law, and a review of the social science and epidemiological literature relevant to the specific topic;
  Analyses of the social and political factors influencing the feasibility of the legal intervention, based on opinion polling data and news media;
  An agenda for needed research; and
Recommendations for improving the health law infrastructure (e.g., model legislation) or the effectiveness of law in achieving public health goals.

Assessment topics are chosen each year by the Center with the advice of the Center’s Affiliated Experts, CDC, and other partners. They include:

School Vaccination Requirements: Historical, Social, and Legal Perspectives (2002) by James G. Hodge, Jr. and Lawrence O. Gostin

Evaluating the Impact of Criminal Laws on HIV Risk Behaviors
(2001) by Zita Lazzarini, Sarah Bray, and Scott Burris

West Nile Virus in the United States (2001) by James G. Hodge, Jr.

Syringe Access Law in the United States (2002) by Scott Burris, Steffanie A. Strathdee, and Jon S. Vernick, with accompanying tables.


In addition to dissemination through the Center website and/or in the form of a report, the results of assessments may be published through articles in legal, medical, and public health journals.