Civil Practice Clinic - Health Law
Students in the Health Law Clinic will staff the medical-legal partnership clinic with Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law Legal Clinics. Students will represent clients seeking disability benefits through the Social Security Administration; represent clients in special education cases; screen parents of patients for legal needs, and provide brief advice or make referrals. Students will conduct initial client interviews for cases kept in-house; and if the case is accepted, proceed to gather and interpret evidence, develop case theory, prepare hearing memoranda, and represent clients at relevant hearings. Students may work in teams of two. Classroom simulations incorporated into the clinic program prepare students for client work. The seminar and related coursework is organized with a systemic justice focus. Specifically, students will evaluate their advocacy experience in comparison to what they will learn about “upstreamist” problem solving and interdisciplinary collaboration. Students will identify the ways in which a lack of access to health care and lack of access to justice reinforce cycles of poverty. Students will explore the impact of social determinants of health on health outcomes and poverty. By increasing access to legal advocacy and positive health outcomes for children whose health needs put them at risk, the clinic will provide an impactful experiential learning experience.