Healthy by Law: The Missed Opportunity to Use Laws for Public Health

The Lancet, Vol. 379, pp. 283-285, January 2012

3 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2012  

Amir Attaran

University of Ottawa - Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine; University of Ottawa - Common Law Section

Tikki Pang

World Health Organization

Judith Whitworth

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Andrew Oxman

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Martin McKee

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Date Written: January 1, 2012

Abstract

Health is the result of biological and social determinants; both are important. Nature dictates the laws for biological determinants; people create the laws for social determinants. Nature’s laws are hard to discover and are eternal whether or not they suit humanity; people’s laws are easily written and can be changed at anytime to suit humanity better. So why is it that the public health community, which expends much eff ort and expense probing natural laws, places negligible emphasis on collection, analysis, and making greater use of the world’s public health laws?

Suggested Citation

Attaran, Amir and Pang, Tikki and Whitworth, Judith and Oxman, Andrew and McKee, Martin, Healthy by Law: The Missed Opportunity to Use Laws for Public Health (January 1, 2012). The Lancet, Vol. 379, pp. 283-285, January 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2000327

Amir Attaran (Contact Author)

University of Ottawa - Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine ( email )

451 Smyth Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1H 8M5
Canada

University of Ottawa - Common Law Section ( email )

57 Louis Pasteur Street
Ottawa, K1N 6N5
Canada
613-562-5800 ext: 2015 (Phone)
613-562-5659 (Fax)

Tikki Pang

World Health Organization ( email )

20 Avenue Appia
Geneva 27, CH-1211
Switzerland

Judith Whitworth

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Andrew Oxman

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Martin McKee

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine ( email )

Keppel Street
Health Services Research Unit Professor of European Public Health
London WC1E 7HT
United Kingdom
+44 20 7-927 2229 (Phone)
+44 20 7-580 8183 (Fax)

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