Online Program

Myths in public health law: Volunteers responding to disasters need special liability laws

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 3:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.

Wendy Mariner, JD, LLM, MPH, Department of Health Law, Policy, and Management, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA
This five-person panel with george annas, leonard glantz, patricia roche and lynn squillace, examines the evidence supporting and contradicting 5 beliefs about public health laws. Myth: First Amendment protection for advertising Is bad for public health. Advertising restrictions for harmful products depends on who determines what is harmful. The First Amendment protects advertising for public health services like family planning and health education. Myth: HIPAA Privacy Rules obstruct public health and research. Three claims about recently amended HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules are critiqued: the Rules grant privacy rights to patients; the Rules restrict public health activities; and the Rules impede research. Myth: limits on tort litigation and liability will reduce health expenditures. While the slow pace and expense of litigation undermines its utility, studies have found no significant evidence that limits on tort litigation or liability will reduce health expenditures. Myth: volunteers responding to disasters need special liability laws. The legal duty of reasonable care recognizes that different medical standards of care can be used by those responding to disaster situations. Myth: public oversight impedes research on influenza. Research using flu strains that are modified to enhance virulence raises unresolved legal and ethical problems of population safety and challenges assumptions about research oversight.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Describe what the laws presented do and do not require Differentiate legal principles from beliefs about the law Evaluate sources of misperceptions about the law Explain how misperceptions of the law hamper public health

Keyword(s): Health Law, Public Health Policy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have studied, taught and published on the subject of the presentation for more than 20 years, without funding from any interested industries or parties.
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.

Back to: 3366.0: Myths in Public Health Law