This course teaches a basic understanding of how the constitution distributes power and gives states the authority to take public health actions, which is an essential component of the practice of public health across our nation.

This course is designed for anyone working in a public health related setting or interested in this topic.


At the conclusion of this course, learners will be able to:

  • Articulate a basic understanding of how the constitution creates, divides, and limits power; and
  • Explain how these powers authorize public health actions at the federal and state level.


For CPH recertification, the following competencies may be met:

  • T1: 1.8.6. Identifies laws that impact public health programs and organizations.


Produced by the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and Minnesota Department of Health Division of Emergency Preparedness and Response. Subject Matter Experts: Anne Barry, J.D., MPH; Robin Benson, J.D., M.Ed.; Joel Wu, J.D., MPH, MA, HEC-C.

This project was supported by a grant to the University of Minnesota, Public Health Crisis Response Cooperative Agreement: Academic Partnership to Enhance Workforce Preparedness from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Grant/Cooperative Agreement Number NU90TP922188. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC.

Continuing Education Units

This course is eligible for 1 continuing education contact hours (0.1 CEUs) and 1 CPH re-certification credit.

Contact & Questions

For questions regarding course registration, materials, and content, please email cpheo@umn.edu.

For questions regarding system access, log-in, user name, or password, please email help@umn.edu or call 612-301-4357.

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Constitutional Basis for Public Health Action
Online, self paced
Jan 04, 2024 to Jan 06, 2025
Delivery Options
Self Paced Online  
Course Fee(s)
No Fee $0.00
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