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Legal Framework for CDC-DOJ Public Health Response

While the most complementary and close connection might be between law enforcement and public health, the other sectors represented on the Workgroup —the judiciary and corrections —also are key partners. For example, in a contagious disease epidemic, a public health official may request a quarantine of a group or area and law enforcement officers would be responsible for enforcing it, but legal challenges to either public health or police authority quickly would engage the court system. Likewise, an infected person resisting an isolation order might be arrested, but could not be admitted to a crowded jail or health-care facility without endangering other inmates, staff, or patients.

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