Georgetown Law Journal   |  July 9, 2009

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The last three decades have seen the blossoming of the fields of health law
and empirical legal studies and their intersection—empirical scholarship in
health law and policy. Researchers in legal academia and other settings have
conducted hundreds of studies using data to estimate the effects of health law on
accident rates, health outcomes, health care utilization, and costs, as well as
other outcome variables. Yet the emerging field of empirical health law faces
significant challenges—practical, methodological, and political. The purpose of
this Article is to survey the current state of the field by describing commonly
used methods, analyzing enabling and inhibiting factors in the production and
uptake of this type of research by policymakers, and suggesting ways to increase
the production and impact of empirical health law studies.

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