More than one million people are arrested annually for drug possession across the United States. People charged with and convicted of criminal drug offenses can face devastating collateral consequences, including eviction, unemployment, loss of the right to vote, and deportation. Research shows that criminalization of drug possession contributes to the marginalization of people with substance use disorders, results in stark racial disparities, and costs billions of dollars.
This longitudinal dataset captures legislation addressing school entry vaccination requirements, non-medical exemptions to school vaccination requirements, the reallocation of authority to determine vaccination requirements for schools, and expansions to provider scope of practice to administer vaccines between January 1, 2023, and May 22, 2023, in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia.
This dataset examines features of prior authorization policies in the Medicaid managed care plans of five states (Georgia, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, and South Carolina) selected to be case studies for ADHD medication prior authorization in managed care. Features examined relate to pediatric ADHD medication treatment, including applicable ages, medication types, and criteria for approval in effect as of April 1, 2023.
Public Health and law are interwoven, shaping how communities interact and people experience the world around them. Legal mapping is the scientific process of analyzing state laws concerning a particular legal topic at either a particular point in time (cross-sectional) or its change over a period of time (longitudinal). This page features ASTHO’s legal mapping work to plot the legal landscape for public health priorities, beginning with policies intended to prevent overdose.
Unintentional drug overdose is a leading cause of preventable death in the United States. Some states have enacted "Good Samaritan" laws that create immunities or other legal protections for people who call for help in the event of an overdose to encourage and protect bystanders who may otherwise not be willing to call for fear of being arrested for drug-related crimes. The protection afforded by these laws varies from state to state.
Coverage expansion for Medicaid improves access to care and health outcomes for people with substance use disorder (SUD). In spite of that evidence, as of May 2023, 10 states have failed to expand Medicaid funding to low-income adults as emergency enrollment protections established for COVID-19 end. This coverage gap in the non-expansion jurisdictions denies access to care to more than 1.9 million people living in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
This longitudinal dataset captures laws addressing authority to respond to public health emergencies that were enacted between May 21, 2022, and October 6, 2023, in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia.
To mitigate the risks associated with prescription opioid use, most states have implemented laws requiring clinicians to obtain informed consent prior to prescribing opioids in at least some circumstances. Informed consent is defined as a communication between a patient and clinician in which the patient agrees to a medical intervention after being informed of the risks, benefits, and alternatives.
State laws setting the scope and limits of emergency authority are crucial to an effective public health response. This suite of legal data captures details of legislation that addresses emergency health authority introduced between January 1, 2021, and May 20, 2022, in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia.