State and local public health agencies serve an important role as laboratories for experimentation and innovation of policies, services, and programs. However, higher levels of government—state or federal legislatures—can preempt or limit the authority of lower jurisdictions by passing weaker laws.
In 2011, at the request of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Institute of Medicine released a report on preemption deeming it a crosscutting issue in public health. The report recommended that minimum standards be set for states and localities to protect health and safety.
These authors developed the Preemptive Framework as a tool to help the public health field respond to the potentially negative consequences of preemptive proposals. They recommend: