209631 Stimulating the Use of Law to Improve Public Health Practice Ė the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Contributions

Monday, November 9, 2009: 2:30 PM

Angela K. McGowan, JD, MPH , Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Princeton, NJ
Michelle A. Larkin, JD, MS, RN , Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Princeton, NJ
Marek Sulzynski, MPA , Public Health Team, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Princeton, NJ
The ability of public health agencies and practitioners to utilize law to improve the population's health varies dramatically as different agencies and policy-makers use laws, regulations, and policies to varying degrees of success. Recent multiple food-borne disease outbreaks, increases in preventable chronic diseases, and shortcomings in our state and federal emergency preparedness system underscore the need for effective legal and policy solutions to address these public health challenges. Additionally, conducting research about the impact of law on health and translating these findings for public health and policymaker audiences is essential.

This session will provide an overview of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's investments in health law including describing two new efforts to build this field. First, through our Public Health Law Research program, we seek to fund research that explores legal and regulatory solutions to pressing global health challenges. This program should answer questions about law's impact on health as well as the best methods for using laws to improve population health. Second, we look to build the field of scholarship and practice to promote a robust public health legal infrastructure. This will be accomplished through linking efforts nationally, offering practical trainings and resources, creating a cohesive network of practitioners at the federal, state and local levels, and making valuable legal and public health expertise available to improve public health practice. This should result in promoting more effective laws, as well as greater implementation and enforcement of those that will protect, promote and improve health.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance of using law to improve the publicís health. Identify the need for research and building the evidence about the impact of law on public health. Describe the Robert Wood Johnson Foundationís programs in health law including stimulating research and to helping to build the field of public health law

Keywords: Health Law, Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am involved with organizing and developing the programs and efforts being discussed. I also have experience working in the field of public health law and
Any relevant financial relationships? No

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.