Health Equity Policy & Advocacy Clinic
The Health Equity Policy & Advocacy Clinic is an interprofessional medical-legal partnership (MLP) policy and advocacy clinic that provides law students with fundamental lawyering and legislative skills. MLP is a healthcare and legal services delivery model that incorporates a law student into the medical care team to resolve the social determinants of poor health affecting low-income patients. Medical providers identify health problems that are caused by legal and social issues, such as asthma resulting from substandard conditions in rental housing, and refer the patient to the clinic for legal representation to address the root causes. In addition to providing legal assistance to individual clients, law students in the clinic partner with medical and public health students to engage in policy advocacy aimed at improving community-wide health and achieving health equity in low-income and marginalized communities. When representing clients, students are responsible for every aspect of the case, including interviewing, fact investigation, legal research and drafting, client counseling, negotiation, and court representation. During policy and legislative advocacy, students are responsible for all aspects of advocacy, including strategy, written materials, stakeholder analysis, coalition building, educating decision-makers, and collaborating with medical and public health fields and community groups to define the problem and identify solutions that advance health equity. Students receive skills training and intensive supervision throughout the seminar, client representation, and policy advocacy components of the course.
Credits: 6 credits on a curve (one semester)
Types of Matters/Cases: Health justice, social determinants of health, poverty law, housing conditions, eviction defense, housing policy, food access and public benefits
Skills Gained: Interviewing, fact investigation, legal research and drafting, client counseling, policy and legislative advocacy, interprofessional collaboration, oral and written advocacy, systems change, communication skills
Prerequisite: 2Ls and above
Recommended Courses: Professional Responsibility and Ethics (6218), Legislation (6416), Healthcare Law Seminar (6411), Housing Law and Policy (6338), College of Trial Advocacy (6683)
Selection Process: Application review