University of Pittsburgh

Health Law Certificate Program: Additional Information

Students enrolled in a degree program at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law can develop an expertise in the rapidly changing, steadily growing field of health law through the Law School's new Health Law Certificate Program.

The program provides students with a strong foundation in health law that will enable them to practice in a variety of contexts, including law firms, health care management firms and insurers, government, and health care institutions. A combination of classroom and clinical components acquaints students with everything from complex business and legal transactions, to bioethics and patient care issues, to the variety of legal issues that arise in the operation of a health care institution. Students gain hands-on experience in these areas through their work in the Law School's clinics and practicums, and in externships and summer jobs available in the health care setting.

In addition to courses taught by regular law school faculty, leading practitioners in various fields of health law such as antitrust, fraud and abuse, business transactions, disabilities law, and nonprofit organizations teach courses designed to relate theory to practice. In addition, Current Issues in Health Law, a required course for all Health Law Certificate Program students, is taught by renown practitioners of health law and by health care professionals and executives.

A Leader in Health Care and Legal Education

Pitt's Health Law Certificate Program has the advantage of being affiliated with the world-class, comprehensive health care facilities available at the University of Pittsburgh. The Law School is only three blocks away from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center System's complex of hospitals and numerous institutes and clinics. Perhaps best known as a world leader in organ transplantation, the medical center is recognized for innovative hospital management and patient-care techniques, and for specialties including cancer research, diagnostic artificial intelligence, reproductive physiology, pain control, cardiovascular research, AIDS, and geriatrics, and many more.

Opportunities to Network


The city of Pittsburgh is host to a large number of law firms and attorneys who specialize in or have departments in health law. Students meet and network with many of these attorneys, as well as health care practitioners, lawmakers, and representatives of consumer groups, through the innovative Current Issues in Health Law course. This course is taught by health-law practitioners and helps integrate the academic and practice aspects of the program, and allows students to examine the larger issues and ramifications of the relationship between health care and law.

Skills to Enhance Any Legal Career

Students who earn Pitt Law School's Health Law Certificate will not only forge a solid foundation in health law, they build skills that are valuable in any area of legal practice. Contracts and client counseling, litigation and legal ethics, insurance law and antitrust issues, policy making and legislation--any combination of these areas can be emphasized in the highly flexible Health Law Certificate Program, depending on a particular student's interests. Each year, students in the Health Law Certificate Program have an opportunity to attend the Pennsylvania Bar Institute's two-day Health Law Institute where they have the opportunity to meet leading practitioners in health law and to obtain up-to-the-minute education in the latest topics in health law.

Students also have the opportunity to participate in the National Health Law Moot Court Competition. Competing against 26 teams around the country, Pitt Law School's 1998 Health Law Moot Court team captured first place honors and was also awarded best brief honors.

Revised 09/28/2011 | Copyright 2011 | Site by UMC