Can an employer refuse to hire someone who tests positive for nicotine or alcohol? Can an airline or movie theatre require overweight customers to purchase two seats? Can a health insurance company refuse to sell policies to those most in need of medical care? Can the government condition public assistance on wellness program participation or work activity? In this illuminating book, Jessica L. Roberts and Elizabeth Weeks consider these and similar questions, offering readers a nuanced analysis of when and why discrimination based on health status - or 'healthism' - should be allowed, and when it should not. They provide a methodology to distinguish desirable health-based classifications from the undesirable, and propose law and policy solutions to encourage the former and limit the latter. This work should be read by anyone concerned with how government does - and does not - regulate based on health.
1. What is healthism?; 2. Understanding healthism; 3. Limits of antidiscrimination and privacy laws; 4. Limits of health insurance law; 5. Limits of private law; 6. Testing healthism.
Jessica L. Roberts directs the Health Law and Policy Institute at the University of Houston Law Center. A noted expert on diverse issues of health law, she has been interviewed by the BBC World Service, the New York Times, the Houston Chronicle, and National Public Radio. She has participated in a congressional briefing on the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, presented at NASA, and served as a consultant for the Football Players Health Study at Harvard. Professor Roberts is also a Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics and a Health Policy Scholar with Baylor College of Medicine's Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy. Elizabeth Weeks is Associate Dean for Faculty Development at the University of Georgia School of Law. In addition to numerous law review articles and book chapters, she is co-author of The Law of American Health Care (2016). She is past Chair of the Association of American Law Schools Section on Law, Medicine and Bioethics, and has received numerous awards and honors, including the American Society of Law, Medicine and Ethics Health Law Scholars Award, University of Kansas Docking Faculty Scholar Award and the University of Kansas School of Law Immel Teaching Award.
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