Requests from federal entities tended to include similar deliverables to
requests from state and local entities, although a higher proportion of federal requests asked for information on the existence or status of policy efforts
or laws on a particular issue across the country (OSL). Requests submitted
by federal entities were also more likely to ask for information on a specific
regulation (INFSPECREG) than requests submitted by state or local entities.
Requests submitted by state entities were more likely to include the following deliverables: ( 1) referrals to contacts/experts outside the Network
(REFGEN), ( 2) information on policy efforts in other states (OSL), ( 3) clarifications on particular provisions of laws and regulations (LACLARREG),
and ( 4) analysis regarding the liability of public health agencies or professionals (LARLPHAP). A notable trend in deliverables among requests from
state entities was the provision of information on and/or guidance from other state entities or officials who had dealt with issues similar to the requestor’s concerns. This deliverable was often expressed in the original request
submitted to the Network (e.g., “what have others done on this?”) but was
also suggested by Network attorneys in response to more general inquiries.
Thirty-seven percent of all deliverables provided to state entities that were
classified as referrals involved a Network attorney referring the requestor to
an official at an agency in another state for guidance. Other kinds of referrals included referrals to officials at federal entities and even referrals to an
official within the requestor’s own state entity.
Requests from local entities were more likely to include the following
21. Such referrals were generally provided by a Network attorney with considerable
experience in that particular state health agency.