People are afraid of contagious diseases. The thought that disease can spread throughout an entire population tends to make people wary of their interactions with their surrounding environment. Hearing about, or even seeing pictures of mosquitoes can make people squeamish or even stimulate an itch. Throughout the ages, the reaction to contagious diseases has been to quarantine and isolate. From the bubonic plague to the 1918 “Spanish” flu, the protocol was to quarantine those infected and isolate the rest. It may be this practice that inspired such precautions be taken by the public. Often these precautions are not warrantless and come to be second nature: Don’t get too close to sick people who appear to sneeze or cough often; cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing; wash your hands frequently. In recent years, the world has encountered new outbreaks from not so new diseases: 2002 SARS. 2009 “Swine” Flu. 2014 both Measles and Ebola. 2016 Zika. To the public, it seems that the next disease may strike at any moment. It is often the government’s duty to intervene and alleviate the damages. This thesis examines the legal aspects of the Zika virus and how past regulations have affected the spread of contagious diseases. In addition, it will examine past outbreaks of different diseases: how the country reacted, what policies were enacted, and how they relate to the current case of the Zika Virus.

Thesis Completion




Thesis Chair/Advisor

Cook, Kathy


Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


College of Health and Public Affairs


Legal Studies

Degree Program

Legal Studies


Orlando (Main) Campus



Access Status

Open Access

Length of Campus-only Access

3 years

Release Date