Research Results

Results from grant-funded research projects evaluating public health law issues.

Identifying data for the empirical assessment of law (IDEAL): A realist approach to research gaps on the health effects of abortion law

The Identifying Data for the Empirical Assessment of Law (IDEAL) method, developed by a team of academics, lawyers, reproductive health experts and law students, follows three steps to support the development of evidence-based guidelines and practice related to abortion law. The process identifies social science and epidemiological evidence that does not explicitly address the law, but can nonetheless enhance the understanding of legal effects and identify research gaps and priority research topics.

Individual Liberty, Public Health, and the Battle for the Nation’s Soul

This essay in The Regulatory Review examines the legacy of the US Supreme Court case Jacobson v. Massachusetts in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Author Scott Burris contends that the vision set by Jacobson — one of coexistence and cooperation in a democratic commonwealth — is in jeopardy as courts in recent COVID-19 constitutional cases have unveiled a new view based less on the social contract than on a strong form of libertarianism.

Pandemic Policymaking: Assessing Legal Responses to COVID-19

This report offers policy recommendations on 35 wide-ranging topics from 50 national experts, from pandemic preparedness and health care to conducting sound elections and adapting immigration policy. Designed to advise leaders at the federal, state and local level, the report presents a timely examination of policy challenges and opportunities in light of the pandemic.

Medicaid and Opioids: From Promising Present to Perilous Future

Medicaid is at the core of the opioid overdose epidemic. Both state and federal government reactions continue to shape the outcomes of this epidemic while death rates in some states continue to increase. There is a strong correlation between those suffering from opioid use disorder and those eligible for Medicaid. Most significantly, individuals with opioid use disorder enrolled in their state’s Medicaid program experience greater positive health outcomes compared to those without coverage.


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