Publication Date: 04/10/2012

As public health and medical breakthroughs of the early 20th century controlled infectious diseases and expanded life expectancy, public health shifted its attention from infectious to chronic disease. This era of public health primarily focused on individual-level risk factors and intervention approaches. Most recently there has been a movement to re-emphasize the importance of fundamental determinants of health and disease, including economic, social and physical conditions.

The public health perspective highlights many mechanisms through which laws affect economic, social and physical conditions that, in turn, affect population distributions of risky or protective exposures and risky or protective behaviors. Exposures and behaviors, in turn, affect population health outcomes.

This monograph is included as a chapter in the forthcoming "Public Health Law Research: Theory and Methods" book, which is expected to be published in Spring 2013.

Alternatively available through the Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN):

Author(s): Kelli A. Komro, PhD, University of Florida, College of Medicine, Ryan J. O'Mara, MS, University of Florida, College of Medicine, Alexander Wagenaar, PhD, University of Florida, College of Medicine