Do State Lines Make Public Health Emergencies Worse? Federal Versus State Control of Quarantine

67 Emory Law Journal 491-543 (2018)

53 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2018

See all articles by Polly J. Price

Polly J. Price

Emory University School of Law

Date Written: March 15, 2018

Abstract

This Article explores the origins and limits of the federal government’s interstate quarantine power. In the event of a public health emergency, state and local political boundaries may generate self-interested measures that risk substantial harm to neighboring states. To more effectively stem a national epidemic and to better protect the interests of regional populations, should the federal government step in to override a state’s protective quarantine? Neither current statutory authority nor how we have thought about it in the past prevents a greater national role. This Article shows how to expand our view of the federal government’s interstate quarantine authority as an important tool to respond to public health threats affecting more than one state.

Keywords: quarantine, public health emergency, CDC, interstate, epidemic, Ebola, yellow fever, communicable disease, contagious, Centers for Disease Control, commerce clause, Jacobson, federalism, isolation, hickox, do not board, Public Health Service, USPHS, bio terrorism, bioterrorism, EMAC, TB, tuberculos

Suggested Citation

Price, Polly J., Do State Lines Make Public Health Emergencies Worse? Federal Versus State Control of Quarantine (March 15, 2018). 67 Emory Law Journal 491-543 (2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3157182

Polly J. Price (Contact Author)

Emory University School of Law ( email )

1301 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States
404-727-7869 (Phone)

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