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Concentration in Health Law

Students pursuing a J.D. may earn a concentration in health law by completing required courses of study, specified co-curricular activities, and a practical experience requirement through the Center for Health Law Studies.

The concentration in health law allows students to explore and demonstrate an interest in the study of health law. Students pursuing the concentration will be prepared to represent health care providers and systems, work in the public sector, or provide individual advocacy.

Recent graduates have obtained jobs at the nation's leading law firms specializing in health law; large health care systems and hospitals; federal and state agencies such as the Department of Health and Human Services; national trade associations or biotechnology or pharmaceutical firms. Students' post-graduation opportunities are geographically and substantively diverse.

Requirements

Any student admitted into the J.D. program is eligible to enroll in the concentration program, including part-time, evening students.

A student who wishes to pursue the concentration must complete an application available here or from Cheryl Cooper in room 941. Students should register as soon as they decide to pursue the concentration. In no event will a student be permitted to register for the concentration their last semester of law school.

Requirements for the concentration in health law include:

  • 10 credit hours of health law courses, with a grade of C or better
  • A publishable health law research paper
  • Attendance and written analysis of five Distinguished Speakers in the Center's Colloquium Series
      • A student may submit up to two critical summaries from any Annual Health Law Symposium.
  • Practical health law experience
Health Law Courses and Seminars

Each semester, full-time faculty members teach a wide range of foundational health law courses and policy seminars. The Center also utilizes adjunct health law faculty, who are experienced health law practitioners, to provide a selection of professional skills courses and seminars in health law. Additionally, health law students have the opportunity to take health law-related public health and ethics courses through the College for Public Health and Social Justice and the Center for Health Care Ethics.

Core offerings include the following courses:

  •  Antitrust
  • Bioethics and the Law
  • Biotechnology Law and Policy
  • Comparative Health Law
  • Disability Discrimination Law
  • Drug and Device Regulation
  • Elder Law
  • Fraud, Abuse and Health Care Regulation
  • Health Care Financing and Business Planning
  • Health Care Law
  • Health Care Quality
  • Health Law Moot Court
  • Insurance Law
  • Journal of Health Law & Policy
  • Products Liability
  • Public Health Law
  • Transactional Health Care Practice

Core offerings include the following seminars:

  • Access to Health Care
  • Advanced Topics in Malpractice & Drug/Device Litigation
  • Competition, Policy, Regulation and Health Care Reform
  • Educating Children with Disabilities
  • ERISA/Employee Benefits
  • Forensic Psychiatry in the Law
  • Health Information Privacy
  • Issues in Elder Law
  • Issues/Nonprofit Organizations
  • Law and Decision Making
  • Law and Science
  • Public Health Emergency Law
  • Regulation of Human Subjects Research
  • Theories of Health Law
Health Law In-house Clinics and Externships

Third-year students, supervised by practicing attorneys, work in the SLU LAW Legal Clinics. Health law students have the opportunity to advocate for the elderly and disabled in the Elder Law Clinic and represent children with disabilities and their families in the Child Advocacy Clinic. Students may also participate in case development and appellate advocacy concerning substantial legal matters such as state health policy.

Externship positions allow students to gain first-hand legal experience in the health care delivery system. Students are regularly placed in the following organizations within the St. Louis community:

  • BJC Health System
  • Saint Louis University School of Medicine
  • Ascension Health
  • St. John's Mercy Health System
  • Washington University School of Medicine
  • Sisters of Mercy Health System
  • U.S. Attorneys' Offices, Fraud Division
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Missouri Attorney General's Office
  • Health Sisters Hospital System
Health Law Semester in Washington, D.C.

In Washington, D.C., law students clerk in a health-related federal agency on a nearly full-time basis for the spring semester. Students in the program will be eligible to earn 12 to 14 credits through a combination of experiential and course work.

Students will work full time during the spring semester at an assigned externship placement for up to 12 credits. Student will also enroll in Health Law Agency Practice, a complementary 2-credit course, addressing both professional responsibility issues that arise in agency practice and advanced topics in administrative law. Students enrolled in the health law concentration program, health law dual-degree program, or health law LL.M. program may apply for the semester in D.C. A student must have successfully completed Administrative Law, Health Care Law, and Professional Responsibility prior to his or her semester in Washington, D.C.
Past agency placements have included:

  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of General Counsel
  • U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of General Counsel
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Quality & Safety, Risk Management Program