MASTER'S DEGREE IN HEALTH POLICY AND LAW

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Not Accepting Applications for Fall 2017

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Not Accepting Applications for Fall 2017

The program is not accepting applications for Fall 2017. Please check back in January 2018.

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Program News


Health Policy and Law Graduate Angela Miner Co-Authored an article: Exploring the e-cigarette e-commerce marketplace: Identifying Internet e-cigarette marketing characteristics and regulatory gaps

Health Policy and Law Graduate Angela Miner Co-Authored an article: Exploring the e-cigarette e-commerce marketplace: Identifying Internet e-cigarette marketing characteristics and regulatory gaps

Health Policy and Law graduate Angela Miner (fall 2014), co-authored an article with Professor Tim Mackey (Associate director of the Health Policy and Law program and Director of the Global Health Policy Institute), and Raphael Cuomo (affiliated with the Global Health Policy Institute), in the journal: Drug and Alcohol Dependence, which points to aggressive online marketing tactics that make purchasing e-cigarettes easy for all ages.

UC San Diego Health Press Release: Online E-cigarette Vendors Engage Customers Using Popular Internet Tools

October 02, 2015  |  Yadira Galindo

​First introduced in the United States in 2007, electronic cigarettes have risen dramatically in part because they are popularly considered safer and more socially acceptable than combustible cigarettes and because there are fewer restrictions on their purchase and use. A study by University of California, San Diego School of Medicine researchers, published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, points to aggressive online marketing tactics that make purchasing e-cigarettes easy for all ages.

“We found e-cigarette vendors were highly engaged in promoting the culture of ‘vaping’ online, including posting images to Instagram, a social media site used by 52 percent of teens,” said Tim K. Mackey, PhD, UC San Diego School of Medicine assistant professor of anesthesiology and global public health and first author of the study. “Despite the fact that 47 states prohibit the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, the results highlight the potential of the Internet to encourage e-cigarette initiation and underage purchasing. This is particularly concerning given that the FDA does not have specific proposed regulations for online e-cigarette sales.” 

Data from the 2014 National Youth Tobacco Survey shows that e-cigarette use tripled among middle and high school students from 2013 to 2014.

E-cigarettes are tobacco-less, battery-operated devices that spritz vapor into the mouth with flavors like bubble gum and peach fuzz. Users of these devices, known colloquially as “vapers,” exhale a mixture of volatile organic compounds, heavy metals and ultrafine particles that usually contain aerosolized nicotine in a cloud of vapor.

Researchers found that 68 percent of the 57 online e-cigarette vendors they studied displayed one or more health warnings about the devices on their website. However, the notices were often depicted in smaller fonts or placed discretely in the terms and conditions section of a website.

One third of the vendors had no detectable age verification process for buyers and of those that did, most required only a simple click to say the buyer was within the legal age limit. Industry analysts estimate that online sales comprise 25 to 30 percent of the $2 billion annual e-cigarette market, which may account for a high presence of vendors on social media, said Mackey, who is also associate director of the joint master’s degree in Health Policy and Law.

“The study found that online e-cigarette vendors use a variety of sophisticated and aggressive marketing practices, including promotional offers and high social media engagement to promote the sale of their products,” said Mackey.

Mackey and team reported that 70 percent of the online vendors used more than one of the three most commonly used social media platforms: 63 percent used Twitter, 52 percent posted to Facebook and 42 percent were on Instagram.

The researchers said the findings could impact the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s 2014 proposed regulations of e-cigarette use, sale, marketing and manufacturing to include online monitoring of the laws.

Co-authors include Angela Miner,  and Raphael Cuomo of UC San Diego.

Recent Article by NPR referencing research that Professor Tim Mackey and other colleagues from the Global Health Policy Institute published about the new .health top level domain

Recent Article by NPR referencing research that Professor Tim Mackey and other colleagues from the Global Health Policy Institute published about the new .health top level domain

Health websites could be overrun by commercial interests, experts fear

The integrity of the “Health Internet” used by millions of people is threatened by commercial interests, a coalition of  health policy experts argues.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is the steward of internet names such as the traditional top-level domains including .com and .org. ICANN plans to expand the domains to .health, .doctor and .hospital.

Groups such as the World Health Organization, Save the Children, the European Commission and ICANN’s own ombudsperson have objected to the plans. In Friday’s issue of the Globalization and Health, a group led by Tim Mackey of the Global Health Policy Institute of doctors calls for moratorium on the use of .health.

Link to NPR Article >>

Link to Global Health Policy Institute Research Article >>

CBC News Coverage on the research >>

Links to other articles published by the Global Health Policy Institute:
1. Link to research co-authored with senior officials from the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, Office of Global Affairs, on health diplomacy in the AAAS journal Science & Diplomacy “Bridging Public Health and Foreign Affairs” >> 

2. Mexico’s drug policy reform: Cutting edge success or crisis in the making?

3.  Anti-counterfeiting Lessons from Hong Kong – Public Private Partnerships and Consumer Outreach

Program Graduate Dr. Katherine Pettus, PhD, MAS (2013) is an Advocacy Officer for the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care

Program Graduate Dr. Katherine Pettus, PhD, MAS (2013) is an Advocacy Officer for the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care

Dr. Katherine Pettus holds a Doctorate in Political Theory from Columbia University in New York and a Masters’ Degree in Advanced Studies in Health Policy  and Law from the University of California San Diego and California Western School of Law.

Dr. Pettus serves as the Advocacy Officer for Palliative Care and Human Rights for IAHPC (International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care). She participates in meetings and conferences in Geneva at the Human Rights Council, and in Vienna at the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, getting to know key mission representatives, and building constructive relationships to further advance palliative care globally. Currently based in Budapest, Katherine travels widely lecturing, reporting, and advocating for improved access to essential controlled medicines and palliative care.

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