The Law-Medicine Center
The Law-Medicine Center

Case Western Reserve University School of Law

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Health Law Curriculum

The health law curriculum is highly interdisciplinary and considers issues from ethical, legal, social, and public policy perspectives. Students can begin their course work in the health law curriculum during their first year, by choosing a spring semester elective in a Health Law subject. Second- and third-year students can choose from a variety of specialized health law courses:
  • Bioethics & the Law
  • Civil Law & Psychiatry
  • Criminal Law & Psychiatry
  • Disability Law
  • FDA Law, FDA Law Seminar
  • Genetics and the Law
  • Health Care Regulation
  • Health Care Transactions
  • Health Law
  • Health Law Clinic I & II
  • Health Matrix; Health Matrix Notes Seminar
  • Hospital and Physician Organization Law
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Public Health Law & Ethics
  • Reproductive Rights Seminar
  • Research Ethics & Regulation
  • Scientific Evidence

Health Law Clinic
Third-year students have the opportunity to participate in the Health Law Clinic, an offering of the Milton A. Kramer Law Clinic Center. The Clinic operates like a law firm within the school, allowing students to apply skills they have developed in their course work to cases for real clients. Students in the Health Law Clinic have primary responsibility for their caseload, serving as first chair at all hearings, trials, and negotiations. On any given day of the week in the clinic, you may find students conducting an examination of a medical expert in a social security disability claim, drafting an advanced health care directive for an ailing client, or seeking to obtain insurance coverage for a client from an HMO. 

Students can also draw from a number of related courses within the broader law school

-Administrative Law
-Torts Theory
-Antitrust Law
-Business Associations
-Constitutional Law II
-Intellectual Property
-Nonprofit Organizations
-Patent Law
-Products Liability
-Pretrial Practice-Medical Malpractice
-Trial Tactics
-Worker's Compensation

Students are also encouraged to take advantage of the outstanding resources of the university community by taking courses taught by the faculties of medicine, management, and social sciences, and by professionals from Cleveland’s nationally ranked health care organizations:

-Altruism in Bioethics (School of Med)
-Anthropology of Health & Illness (Anthropology)
-Anthropological Research Design (Anthropology)
-Bioethics in Genomics & Stem Cell Research: Focus on Argentina (Sociology)
-Business Ethics(Weatherhead School of Management)
-Clinical Ethics Rotation (School of Med)
-Clinical Ethics Theory & Practice (School of Med)
-Communication & Aging(Communication Sciences)
-Continental Perspectives on Bioethics: Belgium (School of Med)
-Critical Issues in Research Ethics (School of Medicine)
-Death and Dying (Anthropology)
-Ethical Issues in Genetics/Genomics (School of Med)
-Ethical, Professional Issues in Genetic Counseling (School of Med)
-Ethics and Professionalism for Nonprofit Leaders (Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations)
-Ethics, Law and Epidemiology (School of Med)
-Foundations in Bioethcs (School of Med)
-French Perspectives on Controversies at the Beginning & End of Life(School of Med)
-Health Disparities (Epidemiology & Biostatistics)
-Health Finance (Weatherhead)
-Health Policy and Management Decisions (Weatherhead)
-Human Development I; Child & Adolescent (MSASS)
-International Bioethics (School of Med)
-International Bioethics-Spain (School of Med)
-International Health Research Ethics (School of Med)
-International Women's Health Issues: Focus on the Netherlands (Sociology)
-Introduction to International Health (Anthropology)
-Mental Health: Belgium/Netherlands (School of Med)
-Philosophy of Law (Philosophy)
-Physician Assisted Death in Belgium & the Netherlands (School of Med)
-Public Health Ethics: Focus on the Netherlands (School of Med)
-Public Health Management & Policy (School of Med)
-Public Policy & Aging (Epidemiology & Biostatistics)
-Research Ethics Practicum (School of Med)
-Seminar in Gerontological Studies (School of Med)
-Social Policy (MSASS)
-Special Topics in Bioethics (School of Med)
-Theories of Oppression & Social Justice (MSASS)

Our program can accommodate the interests of students who wish to focus on health law, or even a subspecialty within health law. Subspecialties include corporate health law, medical malpractice, health care regulation, health care law and policy, and law and bioethics. However, students need not declare an area of specialization. Students can fulfill their law school writing requirement by participating in a seminar, a journal, or supervised health law research. Working closely with one of our faculty, second- and third-year students earn credit for a research project, which must meet high standards of scholarship.

The Health Law Concentration
Students who are prepared to devote substantial effort to the study of health law can receive recognition through our concentration program. This program provides coherence and guidance in course selection and encourages and recognizes academic achievement in health law. Students who make a commitment to the concentration take a core course (Business Associations, Evidence, or Administrative Law), Health Law, and at least nine credit hours from designated eligible courses in the health law curriculum. In order to assure that the health law concentration is a meaningful credential, students must maintain at least a B average in all courses defined by the concentration and earn at least a B+ on a supervised research project.

Students receive Honors for a B+ or better average in all courses defined by the concentration.

LL.M. Students
Foreign lawyers pursuing a Master of Laws degree at Case School of Law through the LL.M. program in U.S. and Global Legal Studies may also pursue a Concentration Certificate in Health Law.

Dual Degree Programs
We offer several dual degree programs that allow full-time students to combine their legal education, leading to a J.D. degree, with other studies, leading to a second graduate degree. Applicants apply separately to both the law school and the second degree-granting school. Most dual degree programs are completed in four years.

JD/MA (Bioethics)
The Department of Bioethics at the School of Medicine offers an M.A. in Bioethics, which focuses on the ethical, cultural, and policy dimensions of health care, technology, and the life sciences. The program emphasizes the interdisciplinary and interprofessional nature of the field, and includes a significant clinical component.

JD/MPH (Public Health)
Offered by the Schools of Medicine and Graduate Studies, the M.P.H. degree provides students with the broad base of knowledge and skills necessary for the field of public health. Students have opportunities to apply what they learn to community health problems.

JD/MD (Medicine)
This six-year program allows students to study at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, one of the finest in the country. Participants may begin their studies at the law or medical school, and complete two years at the host school before continuing study at the other school.

JD/MS (Biochemistry)
The School of Medicine offers an M.S. program in biochemistry designed to provide students with knowledge of the latest advancements in biochemistry and related fields.

JD/MSSA (Social Work)
Consistently ranked as one of the top ten schools of social work in the country, the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences offers a combination of extensive field education and academic study at a major university. Students may choose from a variety of curricular concentrations, including a Health Concentration and a Mental Health Concentration.

JD/MBA (Management)
Students may pursue an M.B.A. degree from Weatherhead School of Management, in addition to their law degree. Those interested in health law may complete a concentration in Health Systems Management by taking 12 credit hours from a list of eligible courses focused on the topic, of which nine hours may be counted toward the M.B.A.

The Center sponsors frequent lunch-time lectures.