Back to Overview

Start learning more about public health, law, and health outcomes
Law and policy are essential tools for protecting and promoting the health of the public. An understanding of public health law is an important skill for anyone pursuing a public health, medical, or nursing career.
PHLA Overview Learn
Why learn more about public health law?

Laws and policies shape where and how individuals and communities live, learn, work, and play. For example, laws and policies can help prevent the spread of communicable diseases, ensure that food is safe for consumption, provide access to transportation, and establish guidelines for safe housing. Understanding the connection between law and health outcomes is critical for anyone who wants to leverage legal and policy tools to protect the health and well-being of individuals and communities. 

Core public health law knowledge:


Having a foundational understanding of public health law.

You can explain what public health law is and why it is important for both non-lawyers and lawyers to know about.


Knowing how to navigate the legal system.

You are able to identify effective legal and policy tools that will protect the health and well-being of individuals and communities.


Understanding how different levels of government work together.

You can describe the balance of powers between the three branches of government and the types of laws they can create.

Start with the Introduction to Public Health Law Series

Our 3-part introductory training series was designed to help aspiring and practicing public health professionals understand and use the law as an important public health tool.

Earn a training plan certificate of completion

Certification Success Store

The PHL Academy Certificate: Advancing Legal & Policy Skills for Public Health Practitioners

Public Health Law Academy trainees who earned our training plan certificate shared what they’ve learned and how they’re using the knowledge in their practices.

Watch a sample of our public health authority training

Do you know how our government balances public health powers with protections for civil liberties? This 8-minute introduction to the scope of public authority describes the importance of staying within the constitutional limits that guide public health activities.

Start exploring our other trainings

Ready to learn more? Get started with additional training series in our comprehensive public health law learning library.

Students looking at a board
Legal epidemiology resources for students
Students are the future of public health practice and need to understand concepts, strategies, and skills in legal epidemiology. These resources supplement the 3-part Legal Epidemiology series and support developing legal epidemiology competencies.
PHLA Researchers
Get on-the-job training to prepare for a career in public health

We’ve partnered with the Public Health Law Program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to offer the Public Health Law Fellowship, a paid opportunity that provides on-the-job training for careers in public health law or policy.

Spring 2024 Cohort
Voices from CDC’s Public Health Law Fellowship
The Public Health Law Fellowship offers on-the-job training to prepare graduate students for careers in public health law or policy. We’re excited to share a Q&A with four fellows from the Spring 2024 cohort.