Health Law Focus Area

Health law issues cut across traditional legal boundaries -- a health law practitioner must be conversant in such diverse areas of the law as constitutional law, legislative process, corporate transactions and contracting, administrative law, and personal injury law. The Health Law Focus Area is designed to provide students with a broad exposure to the range of legal issues that arise in this area. It includes three foundational courses and a range of more specialized substantive and skills courses.

The foundational courses are Administrative Law, Health Law I, and Medical Liability. Administrative Law is an essential introduction to the area as a number of the substantive courses related to health law are administrative law topics. The Health Law survey course provides students with an overview of the important legal and political issues relating to the delivery and financing of health care in the United States, and the Medical Liability course examines the ways in which the tort system and medical malpractice liability are used to regulate the quality of health care in this country. Students would benefit from taking the Health Law I and Administrative Law courses in their second year; Medical Liability can be taken in either the second or third year.

Every student pursuing the Health Law Focus Area must take at least one skills course. The skills courses include Trusts and Estates Clinic, in which students work in teams of two to represent low-income elderly or disabled persons in estate-planning matters, including preparation of wills, powers of attorney, health care directives, and advice regarding planning for Medicaid eligibility; Administrative Law Clinic, in which students work in teams of two to represent clients who have been denied Medicaid benefits; and a Health Law Externship, in which students work with in-house counsel for a health care institution or in the Health Sciences Division of the Attorney General's Office.

Finally, students wishing to complete the Health Law Focus Area must take at least three elective courses. Electives include Advanced Topics in Health Law, Antitrust, Bioethics and the Law, Elder Law, Forensics, Health Law II, Insurance Law, Law and Mental Health, Medical Fraud, Public Benefits Law, Public Health Law, Taxation of Charitable (Non-profit) Organizations, and Workplace Health and Safety. We have also included a list of additional courses that might be of interest, although they are not required for and do not count toward this focus.

While the Health Law Focus Area foundational courses are designed to provide students with a broad exposure to the range of legal issues that arise in a health law practice, students may wish to group their electives depending upon their particular areas of interest. For example, students interested in the business aspects of health law might choose to take Antitrust, Health Law II, Medical Fraud, and Taxation of Charitable (Non-profit) Organizations as electives, and then supplement the focus area with other business-related courses (e.g. Business Entities and Corporate Acquisitions). Students interested in the law relating to health-care benefits and social justice/access issues might take Elder Law, Public Benefits Law, Public Health Law, and Law and Mental Health, and then supplement the focus with courses such as Poverty Law, Disability Law, and Pensions and Employee Benefits. Students interested in medical malpractice litigation might choose Forensics and Insurance Law as electives, and then supplement the focus area with advocacy courses (e.g., Comprehensive Pretrial Advocacy, Comprehensive Trial Advocacy, and Dispute Resolution).

Health Law Faculty

Career Faculty
Lisa Brodoff Administrative Law Clinic, Elder Law, Trusts and Estates Clinic
Annette Clark Bioethics and Law, Medical Liability
John Eason Taxation of Charitable Organizations


Adjunct Faculty
Tim Crandell Medical Fraud
Greg Duras Workplace Health and Safety
Mike Finkle Law, Public Policy and Mental Health
Russell Kurth Mental Health Court Clinic
Huy Nguyen Public Benefits Law
Gail Sausser Health Law I
Judge Eric Schmidt Bioethics and the Law, Medical Liability
Dave Schoeggl Insurance Law
Eric Schmidt Bioethics and the Law

Focus Area Requirements

Plan the completion of your focus area with a focus area tracking form.

Course Descriptions

Foundational Courses (all courses required)

  • Administrative Law (3 cr)
  • Health Law I (3 cr)
  • Medical Liability (3 cr)

Skills Component Courses (at least one course required)

  • Administrative Law Clinic (3 cr)
  • Health Law Externship (3-4 cr)
  • Trusts and Estates Clinic (3 cr)
  • Mental Health Court Clinic (3 cr)

Elective Courses (at least three courses required)

  • Advanced Topics in Health Law (2-3 cr)
  • Antitrust (3 cr)
  • Bioethics and the Law (2 cr)
  • Elder Law (3 cr)
  • Forensics (3 cr)
  • Health Law II (3 cr)
  • Insurance Law (2 cr)
  • Law and Mental Health (3 cr)
  • Medical Fraud (3 cr)
  • Public Benefits Law (3 cr)
  • Public Health Law (2 cr)
  • Taxation of Charitable (Non-profit) Organizations (2 cr)
  • Workplace Health and Safety (3 cr)

Additional Related Courses

Students pursuing the Health Law Focus Area may find that related courses not strictly within the focus area are of interest. These courses include the following:

  • Comprehensive Pretrial and Trial Advocacy
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Business Entities
  • Disability Law
  • Federal Criminal Law
  • Law and Biotechnology
  • Pensions and Employee Benefits
  • Poverty Law
  • Products Liability