John Marshall Law School Offers Health Law Certificate

The John Marshall Law School is set to begin a new JD certificate that will offer degree candidates a specialization in health law.

Students can select this certificate beginning in August for the 2011-2012 academic year. The certificate was developed because of a societal need for such specialization and in response to student interest in health law.

“Our JD Certificate in Health Law provides our students with an opportunity to concentrate in an emerging and significant area of law,” noted Ralph Ruebner, associate dean for Academic Affairs. “In addition to the required coursework, our students may choose from a wide array of courses, including those relating to technology, privacy, public health issues, litigation and legal drafting. We also plan to enlarge our course offerings as the certificate program develops.”

In order to earn the certificate, JD students must complete at least 19 credits in the health law curriculum; nine required credits and 10 elective credits. Required courses are Administrative Law, Health Fraud Law, Health Law, and Medical Negligence. Electives, which can be selected from a broad range of interdisciplinary areas, include Assisted Reproductive Technology Law, Public Health Emergency Law, Privacy Law, Food, Drug and Cosmetics Law, and Psychology and Law. Candidates must maintain a 3.25 grade-point average in all classes that count toward the certificate, and a 3.0 overall grade-point average.

In addition, the law school will offer an innovative course that teaches students the lawyering skills required of a health care lawyer.  Students will learn how to draft legal documents and perform the skills required of health law professionals.

“John Marshall Law School will be an innovator in offering courses in health law,” said Professor Marc Ginsberg, who chaired the planning committee.

Many of these courses had already been part of the curriculum at John Marshall, but had not previously been grouped into a certificate program.

The JD certificate in Health Law joins other specializations already being offered at the John Marshall Law School, including certificates in Elder Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, International Human Rights Law, Sustainability Law, and Trial Advocacy.

Among the faculty slated to teach classes aligned with the health law certificate are Adjunct Professor Nanette Elster, formerly the director of the Health Law Institute at DePaul University, who is a vice president at Spence & Elster, a firm focusing on fertility law.  Also scheduled to teach are Dr. Monique Anawis, a practicing ophthalmologist and an attorney who is a consultant in medical malpractice cases; Dr. Ernest Chiodo, a physician-attorney with board certification in internal medicine and occupational and environmental medicine, among other specialties; Dr. Michael  Hriljac, a podiatrist-attorney who holds a DPM from the Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine and is executive director of the Illinois Podiatric Medical Association; Judith Munson, an attorney who has concentrated on public health law in the international arena;  and Elaine Zacharakis, an attorney who specializes in health care technology and has taught previously at John Marshall’s Center for Information Technology and Privacy.

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