Health Law, Bioethics & Human Rights
Health law, bioethics, and human rights are complementary disciplines for defining and analyzing how the public’s health can and should be protected most effectively. Principles of justice, bioethics, and human rights are embodied in public health, which evolves to meet new challenges like bioterrorism, H1N1 influenza, the Haiti earthquake, and obesity.
Students in the Health Law, Bioethics & Human Rights concentration explore this dynamic interaction in a wide range of public health programs, such as public health preparedness, genetic testing, advertising and regulating dangerous products, screening for chronic diseases as well as illicit drugs, emergency medical care, patient safety, responding to mental illness, reforming health insurance, and conducting biomedical research.
All students gain essential knowledge and skills to assess the power and limits of federal, state, and local governments and private entities to take public health actions. Students who have a particular interest in bioethics can take courses that focus on what should be done to protect public health and provide health care. Those who have a particular interest in human rights and global health can take courses that focus on human rights theory and the international conventions and organizations designed to make public health interventions more responsive to the people that they serve.
The department’s research and service activities in law, bioethics, and human rights are designed to enrich the educational experience of our students, whom we welcome to participate in our work.
The Department of Health Law, Bioethics & Human Rights offers the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree with optional emphasis areas in bioethics and human rights.