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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing
4035.0: Tuesday, November 06, 2007 - 8:55 AM

Abstract #147796

Untapped potential: The legal powers and duties of local boards of health

Marnie L. Glaeberman, JD, MPH and Marie M. Fallon, MHSA, EdD (c). National Association of Local Boards of Health, 1300 L Street, NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20005, 202-218-4413, marnie@nalboh.org

Local Boards of Health are the trustees of public health in their communities. The powers and duties of these local boards, codified in state statutes, are often unknown or misunderstood, leading to underutilized resources, and missed opportunities. NALBOH, which also produced the state-specific guide, Legal Authority for Tobacco Control in the United States, is compiling a state-by-state compendium identifying the legal authority of local boards to set public health policy in their jurisdictions. When elected officials and members of the public are better informed about local public health governance structures, the result is a stronger national public health system. Information codified in state statutes includes the process and locus of responsibility for identifying qualified board members, a description of the appointment or election process, details of the terms and composition of a LBOH, the legally mandated role(s) of a local board of health (LBOH), and the powers and duties of a LBOH. The goal of this project is to increase awareness of the implications of the law for public health governance and practice, and to empower local health boards to have an impact in their communities. This presentation will examine and analyze the various models of legal authority granted to public health governing bodies, so that all stakeholders can better understand and implement their roles and responsibilities, and be more effective advocates for public health.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Local Public Health Agencies, Law

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Public Health Law & Powers During Public Health Emergencies

The 135th APHA Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 3-7, 2007) of APHA