"Public health law governs 'the legal powers and duties of the state to assure the conditions for people to be healthy (e.g., to identify, prevent, and ameliorate risks to health in the population) and the limitations on the power of the state to constrain the autonomy, privacy, liberty, or other legally protected interests of individuals for the protection or promotion of community health.' In recent years, the focus of public health law has turned increasingly to determining how these principles should be implemented in the event of an outbreak of a life-threatening communicable disease, whether naturally occurring (such as severe acute respiratory syndrome [SARS] or avian flu) or resulting from a bioterrorism attack. Plans for a public-health response to such a crisis necessarily include the possibility of isolation or quarantine (I/Q) - that is, the confinement within a proscribed area of persons who have been exposed to or contracted a communicable disease, to guard against the spread of the disease to the general public."
Minnesota Judicial Branch
Minnesota Judicial Branch: http://www.mncourts.gov/