HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

A New Method for Calculating Choline Content and Determining Appropriate Choline Levels in Foods

Abed Forouzesh (University of Tehran), Fatemeh Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), Sadegh Samadi Foroushani (University of Tehran), Abolfazl Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), A New Method for Calculating Choline Content and Determining Appropriate Choline Levels in Foods, SSRN (2022):

Calculating the choline content per 100 kcal, 100 g or 100 mL, or the reference amount customarily consumed (RACC) shows the choline content of some foods inappropriately. So, making some food choices based on them to achieve adequate choline intake may increase the risks of some chronic diseases. Calculating the choline content and determining appropriate choline levels (to achieve adequate choline intake) based on U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC), and the proposed method were performed in 4,691 food items. Making some food choices based on the FDA and CAC per serving (the serving is derived from the RACC) or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to achieve adequate choline intake exceeded energy needs, which could lead to overweight or obesity. Making some food choices based on the CAC per 100 kcal or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to achieve adequate choline intake did not meet choline requirements, which could lead to choline deficiency. Some foods that met choline requirements were not appropriate food choices based on the CAC per 100 g or 100 mL or CAC per serving to achieve adequate choline intake. On the basis of the proposed method, calculating the choline content and determining appropriate choline levels in foods are performed by considering RACCs and the energy content of foods. Thus, making food choices based on the proposed method met choline requirements and did not exceed energy needs. About 96.5% of foods contained choline. On the basis of the proposed method, the average (%) of foods containing appropriate choline levels in food groups was 21.91%, of which 19.35% was the average of choline source (good source of choline) foods, and 2.56% was the average of high choline (excellent source of choline) foods. Lamb, veal, and game products with 90.8%, pork products with 88.15%, finfish and shellfish products with 86.67%, beef products with 83.45%, and poultry products with 69.7% had the highest averages of foods containing appropriate choline levels. The highest amounts of choline were found in egg yolks, scrambled eggs, omelet, whole eggs (such as chicken egg, duck egg, goose egg, and quail egg), Braunschweiger (a liver sausage), liver pate, most meats (meat from lamb, mutton, veal, pork, beef, finfish, shellfish, poultry, and meat from other species, excluding fat, suet, poultry skin, breakfast strips, cured salt pork, bacon strips, smoked or kippered finfish, and anchovy), nutrition shake (choline-fortified), hot and sour soup, soy vermicelli, sandwich with egg, tofu yogurt, egg drop soup, caviar, edamame, soy protein, whey protein, soy milk, corn pudding, eggnog, spinach soufflé, soy burgers, pork head cheese, and shiitake mushrooms. Foods containing appropriate choline levels were not found in seven food groups (cereal grains and pasta; fats and oils; fruits and fruit juices; nut and seed products; snacks; spices and herbs; sweets) and were very few in six food groups (baked products; breakfast cereals; soups, sauces, and gravies; beverages; vegetables and vegetable products; sausages and luncheon meats). Major foods containing appropriate choline levels were allocated to meat-containing foods and egg yolk-containing foods. However, few numbers of foods containing appropriate choline levels were found in legumes and legume products, vegetables, soy protein- or whey protein-containing foods, and wheat germ-containing foods.

August 10, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

A New Method for Calculating Cholesterol and Saturated Fat Contents and Determining Appropriate Cholesterol Levels in Foods

Abed Forouzesh (University of Tehran), Fatemeh Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), Sadegh Samadi Foroushani (University of Tehran), Abolfazl Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), A New Method for Calculating Cholesterol and Saturated Fat Contents and Determining Appropriate Cholesterol Levels in Foods, SSRN (2022):

Calculating the cholesterol and saturated fat contents per 100 g or 100 mL, 50 g, or the reference amount customarily consumed (RACC) shows the cholesterol and saturated fat contents of some foods inappropriately. So, making some food choices based on them to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes may increase the risks of some chronic diseases. Calculating the cholesterol and saturated fat contents and determining appropriate cholesterol levels (to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes) based on U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC), and the proposed method were performed in 8,068 food items. Making some food choices based on the FDA per serving (the serving is derived from the RACC, 100 g, or 50 g) or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes exceeded cholesterol or saturated fat needs, which could lead to high LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol concentration in the blood. Some foods that did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs were not appropriate food choices based on the FDA per serving or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes. Making food choices based on the proposed method to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs. Also, foods that did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs were appropriate food choices based on the proposed method to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes. About 56% and 95% of foods contained cholesterol and saturated fat, respectively. On the basis of the proposed method, the averages (%) of cholesterol free and low cholesterol foods in food groups were 34.83% and 38.67%, respectively. Fruits and fruit juices (99.35% and 99.35%), vegetables and vegetable products (94.39% and 94.92%), breakfast cereals (93.55% and 93.55%), cereal grains and pasta (90.24% and 90.24%), spices and herbs (88.71% and 88.71%), beverages (85.99% and 89.25%), and legumes and legume products (75.07% and 78.43%) had the highest averages (%) of cholesterol free and low cholesterol foods. Foods containing appropriate cholesterol levels were not found or were very few in eight food groups (lamb, veal, and game products; poultry products; pork products; beef products; finfish and shellfish products; sausages and luncheon meats; fast foods; restaurant foods). The highest amounts of cholesterol were found in animal organs (such as brain, kidney, liver, testes, giblets, spleen, sweetbread, gizzard, lungs, pancreas, heart, thymus, stomach, chitterlings, tongue, and tripe), egg yolks, scrambled eggs, omelet, whole eggs (such as turkey egg, duck egg, goose egg, quail egg, and chicken egg), sandwich with egg, breaded fried chicken, liver pate, chocolate mousse, fish oils (such as herring oil, sardine oil, cod liver oil, menhaden oil, and salmon oil), caviar, squid, cuttlefish, shrimp, lobster, and eel. In general, the cholesterol free and low cholesterol claims were not met in meat-containing foods, egg yolk-containing foods, and fat- or oil-containing foods. However, these claims were met in foods containing small amounts of meat, egg yolk, fat, or oil. Meats (such as beef, veal, lamb, mutton, pork, poultry, finfish, shellfish, and meat from other species), egg yolks, fats, and oils of animal origin contained cholesterol and saturated fat, and fats and oils of plant origin contained saturated fat.

August 10, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Balancing the Principles of Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations Under the Affordable Care Act

Eze Simpson Osuagwu (International Institute for Development Studies), Balancing the Principles of Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations Under the Affordable Care Act, SSRN (2022):

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 is considered the most comprehensive piece of healthcare legislation aimed at providing a universal coverage for the American people. Nonetheless, the controversy surrounding the implementation of this Act stems from the principles of federalism and intergovernmental relations that is inherent in the constitution. As a result, the various states decision to run their exchanges creates disparities in healthcare costs and accessibility. This paper argues that federal interventions do not provide an answer to these anomalies but suggests that the leadership failure in the implementation could be addressed through a Christian worldview.

August 10, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Should AI-Enabled Medical Devices be Explainable?

Rita Matulionyte (Macquarie Law School), Paul Nolan (Australian Bar Association), Farah Magrabi (Macquarie University), Amin Beheshti (Macquarie University), Should AI-Enabled Medical Devices be Explainable?, SSRN (2022):

Despite its exponential growth, artificial intelligence in healthcare faces various challenges. One of them is a lack of explainability of AI medical devices, which arguably leads to insufficient trust in AI technologies, quality, and accountability and liability issues. The aim of this paper is to examine whether, why, and to what extent AI explainability should be demanded with relation to AI-enabled medical devices and their outputs. Relying on a critical analysis of interdisciplinary literature on this topic and an empirical study, we conclude that the role of AI explainability in the medical AI context is a limited one. If narrowly defined, AI explainability principle is capable to addresses only a limited range of challenges associated with AI and is likely to reach fewer goals than sometimes expected. The study shows that, instead of technical explainability of medical AI devices, most stakeholders need more transparency around its development and quality assurance process.

August 10, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Abortion Laws and Bangladesh in 2022

Samia Jaman Karobi (Independent), Abortion Laws and Bangladesh in 2022, SSRN (2022):

It becomes withering to turn to covert abortions for legal contextual contentions, resulting in a high rate of abortion death. Aside from society's ignorance, there are several other contentions directly contributing to abortion mortality problem, such as laws governing abortion in Bangladesh. Existing law appears to be unfavorable and incongruous with various Bangladeshi contexts such as serious abnormalities of mother or unborn, sexual crimes or non-consensual pregnancies other than gender-identifying abortions and consensual pregnancies. It is critical to have a discussion on subject in order to understand the effectiveness and flaws of existing legislation and to identify appropriate alternatives. The research is conducted using qualitative method, making a comparative study to discuss the need to think in novel ways in order to alleviate problems arising from practicing and relying on archaic regulations and current state of abortion laws in Bangladesh and the need for reformation in this regard. This paper takes an intense outlook at existent abortion rules and regulations in order to demonstrate that, through a global context, some of them make significant legislative or health care sense. Although factors have contributed to existing law change for women rights, sexism, religious faith, virtue, or administrative indifference, and whether there are any contemporary abortion laws are suited for specific justification. I am not arguing in support of literal decriminalization of every abortion cases but trying to say that law should be flexible to some extent to face problems resulting from cynical legal provisions inconsistent with constitutional commitments and human rights.

August 9, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

How Does a Ban on Sex-Selective Abortions Affect Child Health?

Aparajita Dasgupta (Ashoka University), Anisha Sharma (Ashoka University), How Does a Ban on Sex-Selective Abortions Affect Child Health?, SSRN (2022):

Bans on sex-selective abortions, typically implemented to make sex ratios more equitable, may have adverse welfare consequences on surviving children. Exploiting the intertemporal variation in the implementation of a ban on sex-screening and sex-selection in India, we examine the impact of the ban on postnatal health outcomes. Using the observation that sex-selective abortions are more likely to occur among families with firstborn girls, we study whether the ban on sex-selective abortion worsens the relative health and mortality outcomes for children in firstborn female families. Second, we examine if the gender gap in health outcomes worsens post ban. Our findings indicate worsening of health outcomes along {\it both} these margins. The results operate through two main channels: an increase in fertility in intensively treated families with firstborn girls leading to greater competition among siblings for resources and an increase in the proportion of `unwanted' girls.

August 9, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Social Transmission of Non-Infectious Diseases: Evidence from the Opioid Epidemic

Kai Mäckle (University of Mannheim), Stefan Ruenzi (University of Mannheim), The Social Transmission of Non-Infectious Diseases: Evidence from the Opioid Epidemic, SSRN (2022):

What drives the spread of non-infectious diseases? We study this question in the context of the opioid epidemic. Having many friendship links to counties with high exposure to the opioid epidemic positively correlates with overdose death rates. This correlation is not driven by physical proximity and socio-economic characteristics. To establish causality, we exploit the 2010 OxyContin reformulation and the staggered introduction of must-access Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMPs) both of which led to the unintended consequence that users switched to illegal opioids, thereby constituting shocks to illegal drug consumption that are exogenous to friendship network formation. Having more friends exposed to counties severely affected by these adverse consequences leads to higher opioid overdoses, suggesting a causal friendship network effect.

August 9, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Does Labeling Air Pollution Levels Matter? Evidence from Consumption of Respiratory Medicine in South Korea

Youngju Lee (University of California, San Diego), Nobuhiko Nakazawa (Hitotsubashi University), Does Labeling Air Pollution Levels Matter? Evidence from Consumption of Respiratory Medicine in South Korea, SSRN (2022):

In this paper, we analyze how a change in the labeling (guideline) regarding exposure to air pollution affects the consumption of respiratory medicine. In 2018, the Government of South Korea changed air pollution warning standards to a level that was more severe than it was in reality and as compared to earlier, thereby causing people to perceive a greater danger from air pollution than they previously did. Exploiting exogenous policy change and district-level spatial variation, we find that one additional day labeled “bad” after the new guideline is associated with an increase in consumption of medicine related to the respiratory system by 0.9% per person. A heterogeneous analysis reveals that 1) the impact is smaller in one day of consecutive days of bad air pollution than a single day of bad air pollution, 2) the impact is greater for pharmacy and primary care hospitals than tertiary health centers, and 3) the impact varies by type of medicine.

August 9, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, August 8, 2022

Markets, Repugnance, and Externalities

Kimberly D. Krawiec (University of Virginia), Markets, Repugnance, and Externalities, J. Institutional Econ. (Forthcoming):

This Article considers one aspect of the ongoing debate about the moral limits of markets—namely, the purported harmful effects of market transactions on particular relations, goods, services, or society at large, due to an inappropriate valuation. In other words, the argument is that some markets are “repugnant” because they degrade and corrupt a variety of nonmarket values and relations, not just to the willing parties to the exchange, but to larger segments of society.

Continue reading

August 8, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Case Against Reason-Based Abortion Bans

Gray Sutton (University of Chicago), The Case Against Reason-Based Abortion Bans, U. Chi. Legal Forum (Forthcoming):

Before the Supreme Court undid the constitutional right to an abortion, a number of states had passed reason-based abortion bans. These purported to outlaw the performance of an abortion when it was knowingly made due to the race, gender, or genetic composition of the fetus. These bans are unconstitutional, wherever the right to abortion remains. The ban is not unlike a ban a state mandate to include persons of color in white supremacist organizations, or a government requirement that a woman marry a another woman, when she desires not to solely based on sex. Furthermore, these bans meet the old fashioned notion of undue burden. The economic toll of these bans stretches far into the future, beyond the moment of birth, imposing a substantial obstacle on socioeconomic freedom and often revealing a legislative hypocrisy.

August 8, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Transcending the Gender Binary under International Law: Advancing Health-Related Human Rights for Trans* Populations

Aoife O’Connor (Johns Hopkins University), Maximillian Seunik (Independent), Blas Radi (IIF SADAF – CONICET), Liberty Matthyse (Gender Dynamix), Lance Gable (Wayne State University), Hanna Huffstetler (University of North Carolina), Benjamin Mason Meier (University of North Carolina), Transcending the Gender Binary under International Law: Advancing Health-Related Human Rights for Trans* Populations, J. L., Med. & Ethics (Forthcoming):

Despite a recent wave in global recognition of the rights of transgender and gender-diverse populations, referred to in this text by the umbrella label of trans*, international law continues to presume a cisgender binary definition of gender – dismissing the lived realities of trans* individuals throughout the world. This gap in international legal recognition and protection has fundamental implications for health, where trans* persons have been and continue to be subjected to widespread discrimination in health care, longstanding neglect of health needs, and significant violations of bodily autonomy. Yet current legal frameworks constrain the advancement of health-related rights for trans* individuals, and action is required from the global community to reconceptualize international human rights law in a way that recognizes an expansive notion of gender beyond the cisgender male/female binary. This article examines the evolution of gender rights discourse under international law, analyzing the advancement of health-related human rights for trans* populations through the human right to health and cross-cutting principles of a rights-based approach to health. Drawing from recent advancements in the United Nations human rights system, this article concludes that unencumbered legal recognition of gender identity and expression under international human rights law should be central to advancing global health.

August 8, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

How Analogizing Socio-Legal Responses to Organ Transplantation Can Further the Legalization of Reproductive Genetic Innovation

Myrisha S. Lewis (William & Mary Law School), How Analogizing Socio-Legal Responses to Organ Transplantation Can Further the Legalization of Reproductive Genetic Innovation, 74 SMU L. Rev. 665 (2021):

The Nobel Foundation emphasized the significance of genetic innovation to society, science, and medicine by awarding the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to “the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors.” This Article focuses on “reproductive genetic innovation,” a term that includes cytoplasmic transfer, mitochondrial transfer, and germline or heritable gene editing techniques that are all categorized as “experimental” in the United States. These techniques all use in vitro fertilization, a legal and widely available practice. Yet reproductive genetic innovation has resulted in controversy and numerous barriers including a recurring federal budget rider, threats of federal enforcement action, and the unavailability of federal funding.

Continue reading

August 8, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 6, 2022

International Law & Covid-19 Symposium

Tamar Ezer (University of Miami), Joseph Candelaria (University of Miami), Gita Howard (University of Miami), International Law & Covid-19 Symposium, 29 U. Miami Intl. & Comparative L. Rev. 141 (2022)

The COVID-19 pandemic has sent shock waves through the international community, exposing systemic failures and highlighting injustices. At the same time, it has provided an opening to consider new approaches, including lessons for international law. On April 12 and 16, 2021, the University of Miami School of Law International and Graduate Law Programs and Human Rights Clinic, in collaboration with the Human Rights Society, Health Law Association, Environmental Law Program, and University of Miami International and Comparative Law Review hosted a symposium on the impact of COVID-19 on international law. The International Law and COVID-19 Symposium specifically focused on the intersections of COVID-19 with human rights and public health, including state obligations towards vulnerable populations, rights restrictions to protect public health, environmental aspects, reactions by international and regional human rights bodies, and public health responses.

August 6, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

A New Method for Calculating Cholesterol and Saturated Fat Contents and Determining Appropriate Cholesterol Levels in Foods

Abed Forouzesh (University of Tehran), Fatemeh Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), Sadegh Samadi Foroushani (University of Tehran), Abolfazl Forouzesh (Islamic Azad University), A New Method for Calculating Cholesterol and Saturated Fat Contents and Determining Appropriate Cholesterol Levels in Foods, SSRN (2022):

Calculating the cholesterol and saturated fat contents per 100 g or 100 mL, 50 g, or the reference amount customarily consumed (RACC) shows the cholesterol and saturated fat contents of some foods inappropriately. So, making some food choices based on them to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes may increase the risks of some chronic diseases. Calculating the cholesterol and saturated fat contents and determining appropriate cholesterol levels (to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes) based on U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC), and the proposed method were performed in 8,068 food items. Making some food choices based on the FDA per serving (the serving is derived from the RACC, 100 g, or 50 g) or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes exceeded cholesterol or saturated fat needs, which could lead to high LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol concentration in the blood. Some foods that did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs were not appropriate food choices based on the FDA per serving or CAC per 100 g or 100 mL to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes. Making food choices based on the proposed method to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs. Also, foods that did not exceed cholesterol and saturated fat needs were appropriate food choices based on the proposed method to limit cholesterol and saturated fat intakes. About 56% and 95% of foods contained cholesterol and saturated fat, respectively. On the basis of the proposed method, the averages (%) of cholesterol free and low cholesterol foods in food groups were 34.83% and 38.67%, respectively. Fruits and fruit juices (99.35% and 99.35%), vegetables and vegetable products (94.39% and 94.92%), breakfast cereals (93.55% and 93.55%), cereal grains and pasta (90.24% and 90.24%), spices and herbs (88.71% and 88.71%), beverages (85.99% and 89.25%), and legumes and legume products (75.07% and 78.43%) had the highest averages (%) of cholesterol free and low cholesterol foods. Foods containing appropriate cholesterol levels were not found or were very few in eight food groups (lamb, veal, and game products; poultry products; pork products; beef products; finfish and shellfish products; sausages and luncheon meats; fast foods; restaurant foods). The highest amounts of cholesterol were found in animal organs (such as brain, kidney, liver, testes, giblets, spleen, sweetbread, gizzard, lungs, pancreas, heart, thymus, stomach, chitterlings, tongue, and tripe), egg yolks, scrambled eggs, omelet, whole eggs (such as turkey egg, duck egg, goose egg, quail egg, and chicken egg), sandwich with egg, breaded fried chicken, liver pate, chocolate mousse, fish oils (such as herring oil, sardine oil, cod liver oil, menhaden oil, and salmon oil), caviar, squid, cuttlefish, shrimp, lobster, and eel. In general, the cholesterol free and low cholesterol claims were not met in meat-containing foods, egg yolk-containing foods, and fat- or oil-containing foods. However, these claims were met in foods containing small amounts of meat, egg yolk, fat, or oil. Meats (such as beef, veal, lamb, mutton, pork, poultry, finfish, shellfish, and meat from other species), egg yolks, fats, and oils of animal origin contained cholesterol and saturated fat, and fats and oils of plant origin contained saturated fat.

August 6, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Unintended Consequences of COVID-19 Vaccine Policy: Why Mandates, Passports, and Segregated Lockdowns May Cause more Harm than Good

Kevin Bardosh (University of Washington), Alexandre de Figueiredo (London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine), Rachel Gur-Arie (Johns Hopkins University), Euzebiusz Jamrozik (University of Oxford), James C. Doidge (Intensive Care National Audit and Research Centre), Trudo Lemmens (University of Toronto), Salmaan Keshavjee (Harvard University), Janice Graham (Dalhousie University), Stefan Baral (John Hopkins University), The Unintended Consequences of COVID-19 Vaccine Policy: Why Mandates, Passports, and Segregated Lockdowns May Cause more Harm than Good, BMJ Global Health (Forthcoming):

Vaccination policies have shifted dramatically during COVID-19 with the rapid emergence of population-wide vaccine mandates, domestic vaccine passports, and differential restrictions based on vaccination status. These policies have prompted ethical, scientific, practical, and political controversy; however, there has been limited evaluation of their potential unintended consequences. Here, we outline a comprehensive set of hypotheses for why these policies may be counter-productive and harmful.

Continue reading

August 6, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Why International Relations and Global Public Health Need Each Other

Nathan A. Paxton (Georgetown University), Jeremy Youde (University of Minnesota), Why International Relations and Global Public Health Need Each Other, SSRN (2022):

The current COVID-19 global pandemic presents a clear illustration of the need for greater engagement between political science and international relations on the one hand and global health on the other. While this outbreak is the most high-profile example of the need for engagement between international relations and global health, it is far from the only one. It is impossible to understand the policy responses (or lack thereof) to HIV/AIDS, SARS, and H1N1 influenza, among others, without appreciating the political, social, and economic contexts in which these outbreaks occur and interact. Rather than offering a single vision for how this intellectual and academic engagement should occur, we present a number of potential avenues for engagement between the international relations theory and global health literatures and demonstrate why increased cross-fertilization between these literatures would both be academically enriching and improve our understanding of national and global policy processes. A stronger engagement between international relations and global health reminds us that health is inherently political and social, meaning that effectively understanding disease outbreaks and the policy responses to them necessarily goes beyond an understanding of biological sciences.

August 6, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, August 5, 2022

Fertility Preservation for Children with Cancer: Legal and Ethical Challenges

Neil Maddox (Maynooth University), Claire McGovern (Maynooth University), Fertility Preservation for Children with Cancer: Legal and Ethical Challenges, SSRN (2022):

Fertility preservation for cancer patients (oncofertility) is a new and developing area of medical practice presenting unique legal and ethical challenges. This is particularly so when the patient is a child. This paper traces the development of this new discipline and the medical options for fertility preservation for children and young adults. It then examines the legal and ethical issues presented by oncofertility for children by considering the right to reproduce, consent of minors and proxy consent, as well as the question as to who controls the fate of the child’s cryopreserved reproductive tissue. Some tentative conclusions are drawn.

August 5, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy and (Mis)perception of Risk

Joanna Sax (California Western School of Law), COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy and (Mis)perception of Risk, 48 Am. J. L. & Med. 54 (2022):

This Article tackles the critical problem of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy and provides a normative framework for legal policies to address such hesitancy in the ongoing pandemic. The foundation of this Article rests in decision-making theories that allow policymakers to understand individual misperception of risk as compared to evidence-based assessment of risk. Vaccine-hesitant individuals assign a high risk to the COVID-19 vaccine and a low risk to the disease—a perception that is disconnected from the science. The backbone of this Article is the timeline of the COVID-19 pandemic and the underlying science of the disease and vaccines. The timeline provides a factual background to demonstrate how vaccine hesitancy to the COVID-19 vaccine emerged. The instant pandemic also demonstrates changes in how individuals see themselves in society, receive information, and are persuaded by economic forces. This Article combines the individual’s decision-making process with modern day variables to suggest interventions that can undo anti-vaccine damage. While the novelty of the normative framework provided herein is instructive for current COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy issues, this framework can be applied to other areas in which individual’s perceptions of risk are disconnected from evidence-based assessment of risk.

August 5, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Dobbs and the Civil Dimension of Extraterritorial Abortion Regulation

Katherine Florey (University of California, Davis), Dobbs and the Civil Dimension of Extraterritorial Abortion Regulation, SSRN (2022):

A large body of scholarship has debated the constitutionality of criminalizing travel to seek abortions – an issue with new salience in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overruling Roe v. Wade. Increasingly, however, anti-abortion activists are turning to civil remedies as a supplement or alternative to criminal prosecution in cases involving out-of-state abortions, an issue that has received far less scholarly attention. In contrast to criminal jurisdiction, where the outer bounds of states’ authority to punish out-of-state conduct is highly uncertain, the extraterritorial application of state law in civil litigation is a common, routine effect of choice-of-law analysis that is unlikely to raise constitutional difficulties. As a result, it is reasonable to expect that courts in anti-abortion states may give broad geographical effect to abortion-restrictive law and policies in at least some civil litigation. The resulting decisions are likely to create substantial friction between states, as abortion-permissive states try to protect their own citizens from liability even as the Full Faith and Credit Clause demands recognition of foreign-state judgments that courts may be reluctant to give. To be sure, state policies have clashed (or threatened to) in civil litigation before, and this Article explores the outcomes of such conflicts in the areas of divorce liberalization, cannabis legalization, and the enforceability of noncompete clauses. At the same time, abortion is likely to give rise to broader and more intractable strife between states than any other issue courts have confronted in the recent past. Although individual judges can reduce occasions for interstate friction by applying restrained, conduct-focused conflicts principles, the states’ fundamental disunity on the underlying issue of abortion may prove to be a problem that our choice-of-law system is simply not well equipped to resolve.

August 5, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Regulating the Pedestrian Safety Crisis

Gregory H. Shill (University of Iowa), Regulating the Pedestrian Safety Crisis, 97 N.Y.U. L. Rev. Online (2022):

In the 2010s, the United States entered a pedestrian safety crisis that is unique among wealthy nations. Deaths of people on foot surged more than 46 percent during that decade, outpacing the increase in all other traffic deaths by nine to one. There are no signs of improvement this decade; to the contrary, and despite a pronounced decline in driving during some of the pandemic, the early years of the 2020s have proven even deadlier to American pedestrians, with an estimated 7,342 pedestrians killed in 2021—an increase of 54 percent over 2010. These deaths are not randomly distributed; rather, they magnify racial disparities. Even after adjusting for differences in walking rates, Black pedestrians are at a two-thirds higher risk of being killed by a motorist than their white counterparts.

Continue reading

August 5, 2022 | Permalink | Comments (0)