Health law is the federal, state, and local law, rules, regulations and other jurisprudence among providers, payers and vendors to the health care industry and its patients; and (2) delivery of health care services; all with an emphasis on operations, regulatory and transactional legal issues.
Some areas of law it includes are:
The terms "legislation" and "law" are used to refer generically to statutes, regulation and other legal instruments (e.g. ministerial decrees) that may be the forms of law used in a particular country.
In general, there are a wide range of regulatory strategies that might be used to ensure people's health and safety. Increasingly, regulators are taking an approach of "responsive regulation". This involves using mechanisms that are responsive to the context, conduct and culture of those being regulated, providing for a range of regulatory mechanisms to achieve the behavior desired. Where appropriate, the aim is to use incentives before sanctions. However, when those being regulated do not respond accordingly, escalating sanctions can be invoked. These strategies may be broadly classified into five groups:
- voluntarism: voluntary compliance undertaken by an individual organization without any coercion;
- self-regulation : for example, an unorganized group that regulates the behavior of its own members through a voluntary code of practice;
- economic instruments: for example, supply funding sanctions or incentives for health care providers, and/or demand-side measures that give more power to consumers;
- meta-regulation: involving an external regulatory body to ensure that health care providers implement safety and quality practices and programmes;
- command and control mechanisms : involving enforcement by government
- European Journal of Health Law, ISSN: 1571-8093 (electronic) 0929-0273 (Paper), Springer
- Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, ISSN: 1527-1927 (electronic) 0361-6878 (paper), Duke University Press