Students interested in careers in health law can complete a master's degree program in health law, a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree program in conjunction with a health law certificate, or a joint degree, such as a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.)/Juris Doctor. These programs are available at many postsecondary schools.
Top 10 Health Law Schools
Based on 2016 rankings from the U.S. News and World Report, these schools have the top ten health care law programs in the country:
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Tuition (2018-2019)*|
|St. Louis University||St. Louis, MO||4-year, private not-for-profit||JD, Master's||$42,154|
|Georgia State University||Atlanta, GA||4-year, public||JD, Master's||$17,050 in-state, $36,658 out-of-state|
|Loyola University Chicago||Chicago, IL||4-year, private not-for-profit||JD, Master's||$48,506|
|Boston University||Boston, MA||4-year, private not-for-profit||JD||$64,978|
|Harvard University||Cambridge, MA||4-year, private not-for-profit||Master's||$64,978|
|Georgetown University||Washington, DC||4-year, private not-for-profit||Master's||$62,244|
|University of Houston||Houston, TX||4-year, public||Master's||$32,093 in-state, $47,128 out-of-state|
|University of Maryland||Baltimore, MD||4-year, public||JD||$33,651 in-state, $48,741 out-of-state|
|Case Western Reserve University||Cleveland, OH||4-year, private not-for-profit||JD||$52,070|
|Northeastern University||Boston, MA||4-year, private||JD, Master's||$50,700|
Source: *U.S. News and World Report
School Selection Criteria
When selecting a health law program, students should consider the following:
- The Master of Science in Health Law prepares graduates to work in academic and research positions, but it does not qualify them to practice law; individuals interested in practicing health law as licensed attorneys should look for a law school that offers a health law certificate that can be taken concurrently with the J.D.
- Law students interested in public health and policy can earn a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) in conjunction with the J.D., which usually takes one year less than it would take to complete both programs sequentially.
- Students will want to look for schools with medical facilities on or near the school grounds if they are looking for opportunities to take classes from both programs.
Master of Science in Health Law
The Master of Science (M.S.) in Health Law is appropriate for students pursuing an academic, professorial or research-based career. A thesis project is usually required. Students learn about legal issues in healthcare administration and healthcare management.
J.D. with a Health Law Certificate
Health law certificates are offered by some law schools as part of the J.D. degree program. Upon completion of the program, students will have a health law designation within their J.D. degree. Courses in constitutional law, criminal law and torts are commonly required. For the certificate, students take courses in health law topics.
Juris Doctor/Master of Public Health
The J.D./M.P.H. program combines a law degree with a health policy curriculum to provide lawyers with expertise in public policy, public health and biomedical ethics. Students generally complete residencies in both law and science.
There are multiple ways to study health law at the graduate level. Students who want to pursue a career in the field may want to enroll at one of the highest ranked postsecondary schools in this subject.