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Research Guides

Health Law

The promotion and preservation of U.S. public health is the focus of this guide.

About Health Law

Health Law:  "A statute, ordinance, or code that prescribes sanitary standards and regulations for the purpose of promoting and preserving the community's health."    
            Source: Black's Law Dictionary (11th ed., 2019).

"Public health law includes laws (e.g., constitutional, statutory, regulatory, judicial), legal processes, or policies at every level of government (e.g., federal, tribal, state, local) that:
1. are primarily designed to assure the conditions for people to be healthy; or
2. concern structural or rights-based limitations on the powers of government to act in the interests of communal health."

Source: James G. Hodge, Jr., Public Health Law In a Nutshell, at 15-16 (2022).


Health Law Research Databases

Searching JACOB & JACOB+

JACOB is the Law Library's catalog, which includes books and journals. Search JACOB to find books and journals -- not articles -- in the collection of the Jacob Burns Law Library.

JACOB+ includes the GW Law Library's catalog as well as other materials and selected articles to which the Library has access. Please note that JACOB+ does not include all content from every database to which the Library subscribes, nor does it include articles that law students have access through GW's Gelman or Himmelfarb libraries. We recommend that you also search directly in the relevant research databases (for example, HeinOnline, Bloomberg Law, Lexis, Westlaw) and consult our research guides.

Review our Tips for Searching to efficiently locate materials, including how to use the "Advanced Search" feature.

If you cannot find what you're looking for in JACOB, you may borrow items from the WRLC (Washington Research Library Consortium), place an Interlibrary Loan request, or suggest a purchase for the Law Library.

And be sure to Ask Us or visit us at the reference desk. We're here to help you succeed!

Dictionaries & Glossaries

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