1932

Abstract

Legal intervention to influence individual health behavior has increased dramatically since the 1960s. This article describes the rise of law as a tool of public health and the scientific research that has assessed and often guided it, with a focus on five major domains: traffic safety, gun violence, tobacco use, reproductive health, and obesity. These topical stories illustrate both law's effectiveness and its limitations as a public health tool. They also establish its popularity by the most apt of metrics—the willingness of legislators to enact it. The five examples demonstrate that public health law research can and does influence the development and refinement of legal interventions over time. Measuring the impact of laws can be difficult, but the field has the tools of theory and methods necessary to produce robust results. It is past time for public health research to receive institutional, professional, and funding support commensurate with its social importance.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-lawsocsci-102612-134011
2013-11-03
2024-06-22
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-lawsocsci-102612-134011
Loading
/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-lawsocsci-102612-134011
Loading

Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Review Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error