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Reconsidering the Politics of Public Health

Reconsidering the Politics of Public Health Opinion VIEWPOINT Acentraldilemmainpublichealthisreconcilingtherole sequences of inaction presented as a regulatory choice. Dave A. Chokshi, MD, of the individual with the role of the government in pro- The current epidemic of chronic disease has emerged in MSc Department of moting health. On the one hand, governmental policy an environment in which unhealthy behaviors and ex- Veterans Affairs, approaches—taxes, bans, and other regulations—are posures are often the default. To the extent that this en- Washington, DC. seen as emblematic of “nanny state” overreach. In this vironment is enabled by existing policy, there should be view, public health regulation is part of a slippery slope greater transparency about the public health choices Nicholas W. Stine, MD New York City Health towardescalatinggovernmentintrusiononindividuallib- made by not acting. For example, the absence of a work- and Hospitals erty. On the other hand, regulatory policy is described place smoking ban should be considered an active policy Corporation and New as a fundamental instrument for a “savvy state” to com- decision engendering greater employee exposure to car- York University School bat the conditions underlying an inexorable epidemic of cinogens and an increased risk of acute myocardial of Medicine, New York, New York. chronic diseases. Proponents of public http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png JAMA American Medical Association

Reconsidering the Politics of Public Health

JAMA , Volume 310 (10) – Sep 11, 2013

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Publisher
American Medical Association
Copyright
Copyright 2013 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.
ISSN
0098-7484
eISSN
1538-3598
DOI
10.1001/jama.2013.110872
pmid
23975269
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Opinion VIEWPOINT Acentraldilemmainpublichealthisreconcilingtherole sequences of inaction presented as a regulatory choice. Dave A. Chokshi, MD, of the individual with the role of the government in pro- The current epidemic of chronic disease has emerged in MSc Department of moting health. On the one hand, governmental policy an environment in which unhealthy behaviors and ex- Veterans Affairs, approaches—taxes, bans, and other regulations—are posures are often the default. To the extent that this en- Washington, DC. seen as emblematic of “nanny state” overreach. In this vironment is enabled by existing policy, there should be view, public health regulation is part of a slippery slope greater transparency about the public health choices Nicholas W. Stine, MD New York City Health towardescalatinggovernmentintrusiononindividuallib- made by not acting. For example, the absence of a work- and Hospitals erty. On the other hand, regulatory policy is described place smoking ban should be considered an active policy Corporation and New as a fundamental instrument for a “savvy state” to com- decision engendering greater employee exposure to car- York University School bat the conditions underlying an inexorable epidemic of cinogens and an increased risk of acute myocardial of Medicine, New York, New York. chronic diseases. Proponents of public

Journal

JAMAAmerican Medical Association

Published: Sep 11, 2013

References