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Preemption & Public Health — for Facilitators

Tools for Public Health Law Academy trainers

Good Governance

This collection of tools supports anyone interested in teaching public health practitioners about preemption and its effects on public health. It is part of the Public Health Law Academy (PHL Academy), which provides a deeper understanding of the use of law and policy to improve population health outcomes.

Start with our Preemption & Public Health training, then download and tailor the following resources for your specific audience:

  • Facilitator's Checklist
  • Facilitator's Guide that can be customized for your community
  • Facilitator's Script that can be modified for your audience and speakers
  • Slide Presentation that can be adapted to your unique training content

About This Training

Preemption is a legal doctrine by which a higher level of government may limit, or even eliminate, the power of a lower level of government to regulate a certain issue. In its 2011 report, For the Public’s Health: Revitalizing Law and Policy to Meet New Challenges, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) identified the stifling effect preemption can have on public health policies.

Preemption has important implications for health care delivery and public health, yet this rule of law is not part of most medical, nursing, or public health training. As discussed in the NASEM report, preemption can sometimes hinder the achievement of population health objectives.

By providing practical examples and tips for practitioners, this training seeks to a) provide the audience with a basic understanding of the legal concept of preemption and b) explain how individuals in nonlegal professions can anticipate, identify, and respond to preemption.

Learning Objectives

Instructors can tailor these training materials to achieve the following learning objectives:

  • Name the primary sources of authority for a) federal, b) state, and c) local public health actions.
  • Identify one example of ceiling preemption.
  • Identify one example of floor preemption.
  • Name the three key elements for tracking preemption.