A Global Assessment of the Role of Law in the HIV/AIDS Pandemic

Public Health, Vol. 123, pp. 260-264, 2009

Wayne State University Law School Research Paper No. 10-25

7 Pages Posted: 21 May 2009 Last revised: 1 Dec 2013

See all articles by Lance Gable

Lance Gable

Wayne State University Law School

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

James G. Hodge

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

Date Written: May 18, 2009

Abstract

This article examines the dynamic role of law as a tool, and potential barrier, to public health interventions designed to ameliorate the negative impacts of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) globally. Law impacts the lives of persons living with (and at risk of) HIV/AIDS in many ways. Laws may:

(1) help to ensure that public health authorities are empowered to provide effective prevention and treatment programmes; (2) effectuate the human rights to life, health, work, education and property ownership of persons living with, or at risk of, HIV/AIDS; and (3) protect persons living with HIV/AIDS from social risks, stigma and other harms by respecting privacy and prohibiting unwarranted discrimination. However, laws can also create legal barriers in many countries that impede effective HIV/AIDS interventions by penalizing those with HIV/AIDS through criminal sanctions or other policies. As a result, it is recommended globally that laws should facilitate the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS consistent with scientific and public health practices and with a human rights framework. Effective use of existing laws that promote the public’s health, and reforms of laws which impede it, contribute to improved individual and communal health outcomes concerning HIV/AIDS.

Suggested Citation

Gable, Lance and Gostin, Lawrence O. and Hodge, James G., A Global Assessment of the Role of Law in the HIV/AIDS Pandemic (May 18, 2009). Public Health, Vol. 123, pp. 260-264, 2009; Wayne State University Law School Research Paper No. 10-25. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1406573 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1406573

Lance Gable (Contact Author)

Wayne State University Law School ( email )

471 Palmer
Detroit, MI 48202
United States

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States
202-662-9038 (Phone)
202-662-9055 (Fax)

James G. Hodge

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law
111 E. Taylor Street
Phoenix, AZ 85004-4467
United States
480-727-8576 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://law.asu.edu/degree-programs/public-health-law-policy

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