Outbreak Law


A Legal Framework for Public Health Emergency Preparedness—lecture style presentation of both video and PowerPoint Presentation of the legal issues arising in a Public Health Emergency, both Federal Law and New Mexico State specific law are overviewed.  Objectives include:

1.  Understand the basics of Public Health Emergency Preparedness Law

2.  Be aware of the Legal Issues Arising in a Public Health Emergency: 

n      State law—New Mexico specific

n      Federal law

3.  Understand the historical origins of Public Health law


The basics of Emergency Health Law are presented in an overview of States Health Law Powers, U.S. Constitution and Case/Common Law.  The historical case of Jacobson v. Massachusetts, a 1905 Supreme Court’s decision as well as the implication of the Jacobson decision is presented.  Key factors mediating the balance between individuals’ rights and protection of the public health are covered. 


The New Mexico State Health Law Power with Statutes & Rules are referenced with historical perspective in relation to the Spanish Influenza outbreak.  The Federal Emergency Health Law and Federal Statues dealing with quarantine, Federal facilities, territories and international borders are discussed in overview. 


A public health emergency scenario is presented and examined from a legal perspective using the following questions.

Is this situation a public health emergency?

Can we declare a public health emergency?

Can we examine and test people?   

Can we treat and vaccinate people?

Can we share information?

Can we isolate/quarantine people?

Can we force evacuation?

Can we obtain facilities and supplies?

Can we use non-governmental personnel?

Are we liable? Who pays for expenses related to the emergency?

How is a PHE terminated?

The above described lecture presentation is New Mexico specific.  For resources dealing with individual rights and the governments responsibility to protect the public health community see CDC Public Health Law Program website.  http://www2a.cdc.gov/phlp/training.asp

Name: Leslie Scarborough
Phone: 505-272-6272

Center for Disaster Medicine 

2704 Yale Blvd.  SE

Albuquerque, NM 87106

Meta Information
Languages: English
Target Capabiltities: Recover: Economic and Community Recovery, Respond: Emergency Public Information and Warning, Prevent: Information Sharing and Dissemination, Respond: Isolation and Quarantine, Respond: Mass Prophylaxis, Common: Planning, Respond: Public Safety and Security Response
Universal Task Listing: Protect, Respond, Recover
Cognative Domain: Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analyst/Investigation, Synthesis or Evaluation
Copyright Restrictions: Public Domain
Is Product...: Interoptable
Learning Management System Compatability: None
Added: Fri Aug 11 15:35:20 -0400 2006
Last Updated: Mon Feb 19 15:52:35 -0500 2007