Health Law, Bioethics & Human Rights Research

The Affordable Care Act

Constitutionality, implementation strategies, Medicaid expansion, role of private health insurance companies, coverage of public health screening, and patient-oriented research.

Clinical Bioethics

Analysis of clinical case consultations performed at Boston Medical Center dealing with end-of-life care, reproductive health, patient capacity to participate in decision-making, and resource allocation.

Genetics & Genomics

Genetic screening and counseling strategies, including fetuses, newborns, children, and adults. Introduction of whole genome screening into the clinical setting. Role of government mandates and informed consent. Genetic privacy, genetic transfer experiments, and regulation of synthetic biology.

Health Promotion

Legal and ethical issues in health promotion programs among employers, health care payers, government, and communities as well as the constitutionality of state and federal laws designed to change health behaviors (e.g., cigarette labeling laws, container size limits for sugary drinks, etc.)

Health & Human Rights

Development of a theory linking health to respect for human rights, including the meaning of the international “right to health.”

Patient Rights & Patient Safety

Defining the legal rights of patients, including the “right to safety” and the role of evidence-based medicine in setting the standard of care.

Medicine & the Holocaust

Study of the role of medicine during the Holocaust, focusing on racial hygiene, eugenics, euthanasia, and genocide. Care of Holocaust survivors, research on perpetrators and bystanders.

Military Medical Ethics

Study of existing military doctrine, application of civilian medical ethics to the military; special emphasis on ethics standards at Guantanamo, including hunger strike protocols, and the concepts of “dual loyalty” and “dual use.”

Reproductive Rights

Constitutionality of new state laws that restrict abortion services.

Research on Human Subjects

Study of the changes needed in federal research regulations and methods to improve subject understanding of research and improve the consent process and its documentation.

Religion & Public Health

The role of religion in public health policy and the First Amendment limits on governmental interference with religion and religious practices.

Emergency Preparedness

An examination of how public health should work with national security agencies, including the relationship between epidemics and bioterrorist attacks.

Medical Privacy

Privacy of medical and genomic records, quality assurance studies, and electronic health records, as well as the access the government has to private health information.

Legal & Ethical Implications of Wellness Programs

An analysis of the reciprocal interactions between corporate wellness programs and the laws governing health insurance and employment.

Forensic Medicine

Forensic evaluations of refugees and asylum seekers, as well as victims of abuse and torture. Setting standards for same.