Law is the application of certain provisions of constitutional law, international law, and statutes to protect rights and to determine the types of services and resources provided. These laws can affect the type of services a person can receive, as well as how a person may be treated after experiencing violence against women or other forms of violence. Similarly, the laws that protect immigrants can also impact the types of services they are able to access.
Some of the most important legal issues in 2020 will include healthcare, immigration, and human trafficking. In addition, there will be an increased focus on the environment and violence. The federal government is working on several initiatives related to these issues. It is also preparing for a study of non-price factors involved in health care provider mergers.
A medical worker who is vaccinated under the COVID-19 program must report to their employer if they have been exposed to a communicable disease. Although the requirement was not enacted until 2021, it was a major topic of debate in the early years of the Biden administration. After litigation in several states, the federal government ordered the vaccination of all health care workers in participating hospitals. However, it was only in September that President Biden officially ordered the mandate for the federal workforce.
Other legal issues of concern in 2020 will include immigration, voting, and environmental concerns. The court will also assess the conditions of detention for asylum seekers, as well as corporate involvement in facilitating trafficking.
Legal issues of concern in 2021 will likely include whistleblower claims against health care providers. Whistleblowers are employees who report inappropriate or unsafe practices to the authorities. In addition, the federal government is continuing to increase its commitment to providing healthcare pricing information to the public.
While a number of important legal issues remain unresolved in the years ahead, advocates and policymakers are looking for solutions. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is planning a study on the price effects of health care products. If it finds that consumers were charged higher prices for certain products, it could prompt enforcement activity against companies. Similarly, the issue of healthcare inequalities was one of the most discussed topics in the health care industry in the past few years.
As an alternative to traditional trial proceedings, there is now a form of dispute resolution known as alternative dispute resolution, or ADR. This process allows parties to settle cases by making a declaration and formally requesting that the other party provide facts and evidence in a manner that is satisfactory to both parties.
Other important legal issues in 2020 will be the continued discussion of human trafficking and the responsibilities of corporations to help prevent it. It is also possible that the definition of diversity will be revised to encompass more than just overt characteristics, as was the case in the early Presidential Executive Orders. Also, the definition of microaggressions might be a more relevant term in the national dialogue in the year ahead.