Larry O. Gostin
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About Larry O. Gostin
Lawrence O. Gostin is University Professor, Georgetown University’s highest academic rank conferred by the University President. Prof. Gostin directs the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and is the Founding O’Neill Chair in Global Health Law. He served as Associate Dean for Research at Georgetown Law from 2004 to 2008. He is Professor of Medicine at Georgetown University and Professor of Public Health at the Johns Hopkins University.
Prof. Gostin is the Director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law. The WHO Director-General has appointed Prof. Gostin to high-level positions, including the International Health Regulations (IHR) Roster of Experts and the Expert Advisory Panel on Mental Health. He served on the Director-General’s Advisory Committee on Reforming the World Health Organization, as well as numerous WHO expert advisory committees, including on the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Framework, smallpox, and genomic sequencing data. He served on the WHO/Global Fund Blue Ribbon Expert Panel: The Equitable Access Initiative to develop a global health equity framework. He also co-chairs the Lancet Commission on Global Health Law.
Professor Gostin served on two global commissions to report on the lessons learned from the 2015 West Africa Ebola epidemic. He was also senior advisor to the United Nations Secretary General’s post-Ebola Commission. He also served on the drafting team for the G-7 Summit in Tokyo 2016, focusing on global health security and Universal Health Coverage.
Prof. Gostin holds multiple international academic professorial appointments, including at Oxford University, the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa), and Melbourne University. Prof. Gostin served on the Governing Board of Directors of the Consortium of Universities for Global Health.
Prof. Gostin holds numerous editorial appointments in leading academic journals throughout the world. He is the Legal and Global Health Correspondent for the Journal of the American Medical Association. He is also Founding Editor-in-Chief of Laws (an international open access law journal). He was formally the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics.
Prof. Gostin holds four honorary degrees. In 1994, the Chancellor of the State University of New York conferred an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree. In 2006, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Vice Chancellor awarded Cardiff University’s (Wales) highest honor, an Honorary Fellow. In 2007, the Royal Institute of Public Health (United Kingdom) appointed Prof. Gostin as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Public Health (FRSPH). In 2012, the Chancellor of the University of Sydney – on the nomination of the Deans of the Law and Medical Schools – conferred a Doctor of Laws (honoris causa), presided by two Justices of Australia’s highest court—Justices Kirby and Haydon.
Prof. Gostin is an elected lifetime Member of the National Academy of Medicine/ National Academy of Sciences. He has served on the National Academy’s Board on Health Sciences Policy, the Board on Population Health, the Human Subjects Review Board, and the Committee on Science, Technology, and Law. He currently serves on the National Academies of Sciences Engineering, and Medicine, Board on Global Health. Gostin chaired the National Academy’s Committee on Global Solutions to Falsified, Substandard, and Counterfeit Medicines. He has chaired National Academy Committees on national preparedness for mass disasters, health informational privacy, public health genomics, and human subject research on prisoners.
The National Academy of Medicine awarded Prof. Gostin the Adam Yarmolinsky Medal for distinguished service to further its mission of science and health. He received the Public Health Law Association’s Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award “in recognition of a career devoted to using law to improve the public’s health” presented at the CDC. The New York Public Health Law Association conferred the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for extraordinary service to improve the public’s health. In 2015, the American Public Health Association awarded Prof. Gostin the Lifetime Achievement Award for his career in public health law. In 2018, Gostin was awarded the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award, Who’s Who highest honor.
Prof. Gostin is also a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations and Fellow of the Hastings Center. In 2016, President Obama appointed Prof. Gostin to a six-year term on the President’s National Cancer Advisory Board to advise the nation on cancer prevention, research, and policy. He also serves on the National Institutes of Health Director’s Advisory Committee on the ethics of public/private partnerships to end the opioid crisis.
Prof. Gostin has led major law reform initiatives in the U.S., including drafting the Model Emergency Health Powers Act (MEHPA) to combat bioterrorism and the “Turning Point” Model State Public Health Act. He also spearheaded the World Health Organization and International Development Law Organization’s major report, Advancing the Right to Health: The Vital Role of Law (2017).
Prof. Gostin’s proposal for a Framework Convention on Global Health – an international treaty ensuring the right to health – is now part of a global campaign, endorsed by the UN Secretary-General and Director of UNAIDS.
In the United Kingdom, Lawrence Gostin was the Legal Director of the National Association for Mental Health, Director of the National Council of Civil Liberties (the UK equivalent of the ACLU), and a Fellow at Oxford University. He helped draft the Mental Health Act (England and Wales) and brought landmark cases before the European Court of Human Rights.
Prof. Gostin’s latest books are: Global Health Law (Harvard University Press, 2014); Public Health Law: Power, Duty, Restraint (University of California Press, 3rd ed., 2016); Public Health Law and Ethics: A Reader (University of California Press, 3rd ed., 2017); Law and the Health System (Foundation Press, 2014); Principles of Mental Health Law & Practice (Oxford University Press, 2010). Global Health Law is read throughout the world—translated and published in both simplified and traditional Chinese, and in Spanish.
Paul Farmer, Partners in Health, says of his book: Global Health Law is “more than the definitive book on a dynamic field. Gostin harnesses the power of international law and human rights as tools to close unconscionable health inequities — the injustices that burden marginalized populations throughout the world. Gostin presents a forceful vision, one that deserves a wide embrace.”
Internationally, Prof. Gostin received the Rosemary Delbridge Memorial Award from the National Consumer Council (United Kingdom) for the person “who has most influenced Parliament and government to act for the welfare of society.” He also received the Key to Tohoko University (Japan) for distinguished service for human rights in mental health.
In a 2012 systematic empirical analysis of legal scholarship, independent researchers ranked Prof. Gostin 1st in the nation in productivity among all law professors, and 11th in in impact and influence. A 2017 systematic empirical analysis ranked Prof. Gostin 1st in the nation for citations in health law.
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Titles By Larry O. Gostin
The book creates an intellectual framework for modern public health law and supports that framework with illustrations of the scientific, political, and ethical issues involved. In proposing innovative solutions for the future of the public’s health, Gostin and Wiley’s essential study provides a blueprint for public and political debates to come.
New issues covered in this edition:
• Corporate personhood rights raised in response to regulations of tobacco, food and beverages, alcohol, firearms, prescription drugs, and marijuana.
• Local government authority to protect the public’s health.
• Deregulation and harm reduction as modes of public health law intervention.
• Taxation, spending, and alteration of the socioeconomic environment as modes of public health law intervention.
• Access to health care as a strategy for protecting the public’s health.
• Taxation, spending, licensing, zoning, and shared-use strategies for chronic disease prevention.
• The public health law perspective on violence and injury prevention.
• Health justice as a framework for reducing health disparities and protecting the public’s health.
This updated edition reader includes new discussions of today’s most pressing health threats, such as chronic diseases, emerging infectious diseases, antimicrobial resistance, biosecurity, opioid overdose, gun violence, and health disparities.
The COVID-19 pandemic revealed how unprepared the world was for such an event, as even the most sophisticated public health systems failed to cope. We must have far more investment and preparation, along with better detection, warning, and coordination within and across national boundaries. In an age of global pandemics, no country can achieve public health on its own. Health security planning is paramount.
Lawrence O. Gostin has spent three decades designing resilient health systems and governance that take account of our interconnected world, as a close advisor to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and many public health agencies globally. Global Health Security addresses the borderless dangers societies now face, including infectious diseases and bioterrorism, and examines the political, environmental, and socioeconomic factors exacerbating these threats. Weak governance, ineffective health systems, and lack of preparedness are key sources of risk, and all of them came to the fore during the COVID-19 crisis, even—sometimes especially—in wealthy countries like the United States. But the solution is not just to improve national health policy, which can only react after the threat is realized at home. Gostin further proposes robust international institutions, tools for effective cross-border risk communication and action, and research programs targeting the global dimension of public health.
Creating these systems will require not only sustained financial investment but also shared values of cooperation, collective responsibility, and equity. Gostin has witnessed the triumph of these values in national and international forums and has a clear plan to tackle the challenges ahead. Global Health Security therefore offers pragmatic solutions that address the failures of the recent past, while looking toward what we know is coming. Nothing could be more important to the future health of nations.
The book examines the renewed threat from biological weapons, and explores the new world of biological weapons governance. Gostin and Fidler argue that the arms control approach in the Biological Weapons Convention no longer dominates. Other strategies have emerged to challenge the arms control approach, and the book identifies four important policy trends—the criminalization of biological weapons, regulation of the biological sciences, management of the biodefense imperative, and preparation for biological weapons attack.
The book also explores the challenges to public health resulting from new security threats. The authors look at the linkages between security and public health policy, both at the national and international level. For instance, Gostin and Fidler scrutinize the difficulty of developing policies that improve defenses against both biological weapons and the threat of infectious diseases from new viral strains.
The new worlds of biological weapons and public health governance raise the importance of crafting policy responses informed by the rule of law. Thinking about the rule of law underscores the importance of finding globalized forms of biosecurity governance. The book explores patterns in recent governance initiatives and advocates building a "global biosecurity concert" as a way to address the threats biological weapons and infectious diseases present in the early 21st century.
Now in the third decade of this pandemic, the nation and the world still fail to respond to the needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS and continue to tolerate injustice in their treatment, Gostin argues. AIDS, both in the United States and globally, deeply affects poor and marginalized populations, and many U.S. policies are based on conservative moral values rather than public health and social justice concerns.
Gostin tackles the hard social, legal, political, and ethical issues of the HIV/AIDS pandemic: privacy and discrimination, travel and immigration, clinical trials and drug pricing, exclusion of HIV-infected health care workers, testing and treatment of pregnant women and infants, and needle-exchange programs. This book provides an inside account of AIDS policy debates together with incisive commentary. It is indispensable reading for advocates, scholars, health professionals, lawyers, and the concerned public.
Featuring writings by global thought-leaders in the world of health human rights, the book brings clarity to many of the complex clinical, ethical, economic, legal, and socio-cultural questions raised by injury, disease, and deeper determinants of health, such as poverty. Much more than a primer on the right to health, this book features an examination of profound inequalities in health, which have resulted in millions of people condemned to unnecessary suffering and hastened deaths. In so
doing, it provides a thoughtful account of the right to health's parameters, strategies on ways in which to achieve it, and discussion of why it is so essential in a 21st century context.
Country-specific case studies provide context for analysing the right to health and assessing whether, and to what extent, this right has influenced critical decision-making that makes a difference in people's lives. Thematic chapters also look at the specific challenges involved in translating the right to health into action.
Advancing the Human Right to Health highlights the urgency to build upon the progress made in securing the right to health for all, offering a timely reminder that all stakeholders must redouble their efforts to advance the human right to health.
Because prisoners face restrictions on liberty and autonomy, have limited privacy, and often receive inadequate health care, they require specific protections when involved in research, particularly in today's correctional settings. Given these issues, the Department of Health and Human Services' Office for Human Research Protections commissioned the Institute of Medicine to review the ethical considerations regarding research involving prisoners.
The resulting analysis contained in this book, Ethical Considerations for Research Involving Prisoners, emphasizes five broad actions to provide prisoners involved in research with critically important protections:
• expand the definition of "prisoner";
• ensure universally and consistently applied standards of protection;
• shift from a category-based to a risk-benefit approach to research review;
• update the ethical framework to include collaborative responsibility; and
• enhance systematic oversight of research involving prisoners.
GLOBAL MANAGEMENT OF INFECTIOUS DISEASE AFTER EBOLA unites the insights of Ebola's first responders with those the world's foremost experts in law, economics, vaccine development, and global migration to identify missed opportunities from the Ebola crisis -- and to apply these lessons to emerging infectious disease threats. Framed with critical discussions of both the global health financing infrastructures that precipitated the response and the ethical and human rights dilemmas that resulted from it, this volume is much more than postmortem to an outbreak: it is a vital, sometimes damning examination of where we've been and where we're going in the face of emerging infectious diseases.
This volume examines issues--HIV testing, screening, partner notification, isolation, quarantine, and criminalization of persons with HIV/AIDS--within the framework of international human rights law. The authors evaluate the public health implications of a wide range of AIDS policies in developed as well as developing countries. The role of women in society receives special emphasis. Finally, the book presents three case histories significant in the HIV/AIDS pandemic and analyzes them from a human rights perspective. The cases include discrimination and the transmission of HIV and tuberculosis in an occupational health care setting; breast feeding in the least developed countries; and confidentiality and the right of sexual partners to know of potential exposure to HIV. Gostin and Lazzarini have written a book that will be a valuable addition to the libraries of public health practitioners, legal scholars, bioethicists, policy makers, and public rights activists.