HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Just for Fun

How unique is your name?  Click here to find out . . . .

How Many of Me.Com is the website and it is pretty funny.  I am feeling pretty unique as one of four.  Thanks for Paul Caron for the tip.

October 28, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Pandemic Flu Safeguards

Ezra Klein links to a recent New York Times article concerning the threat of panndemic flu and ways that individuals may protect themselves.  It isn't pretty and involves the expenditure of more than just the time it takes to wash your hands thoroughly.

October 26, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Abortion Laws

The Harvard Law Review has complied an international database of abortion laws.  Please click here for the listings.

October 24, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Health law Director Opening

Widener University School of Law (Wilmington, DE campus) is seeking an experienced teacher and scholar to direct our nationally prominent Health Law Institute. Administrative experience is also desirable, but not necessarily required. The Director will be responsible for working with other health law faculty and administrative staff to develop new initiatives that can move the Institute forward. Among the expected responsibilities will be:

* planning conferences and symposia;

* creating new externship opportunities and expanding existing relations;

* working with the development office to identify and pursue granting and other giving opportunities;

* continuing to produce a high level of important scholarship;

* demonstrating leadership skills that will inspire other faculty members to engage fully in the Institute’s mission;

* teaching primarily health law courses (with a reduced teaching load).

Although candidates with backgrounds in any area of health law will be considered, we are especially interested in candidates who specialize in the financial and transactional aspects of health law and health care. A secondary area of interest is public health law.

We are committed to increasing and improving the diversity of our faculty. Accordingly, we strongly urge members of historically excluded or disadvantaged groups to apply.

Please direct replies to Professor John Culhane at:

October 24, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, October 23, 2006

Test Tube Babies on PBS

Tonight, American Experience, a terrific program on PBS, will present a show on test tube babies.  It looks like it will be very informative about the early years of IVF.  Here is a brief overview from the PBS website:

This American Experience production tells the story of Dr. Landrum Shettles -- a relentless researcher with a singular obsession with creating the world's first test tube baby -- and John and Doris DelZio, a couple willing to be pioneers in this quest. This one-hour film tells of the social, political and legal challenges that dictated the course of IVF research in the United States.

Haunted by the fear that their laboratory interventions in the natural fertilization process would create malformations in the embryo, researchers faced a slew of daunting obstacles. Colleagues were reluctant to collaborate on work they deemed too controversial and government agencies refused to fund their research, believing testing IVF on humans was premature. Progress also met with fierce cultural opposition. The Catholic Church excoriated scientists for taking "the Lord's work into their own hands," and their research became the locus of debate over the limits of science.

Yet after the birth of the healthy Brown baby, privately funded research gained momentum in the U.S. In the early 1980, Drs. Howard and Georgeanna Jones opened America's first IVF clinic in Norfolk, Virginia. After more than a year of trial and error, their first success story, Elizabeth Carr, was born. Since then, millions of test tube babies have been born worldwide. The story of the first test tube babies is a precursor of the current debate over cloning and stem cell research.

I am a big fan of the health and science programs on PBS (yes, if you may recall, I did score quite high on that nerd/geek test) but in all seriousness, they are terrific shows and great for class.   Many of the programs are now available on-line and can be assigned before class.  The programs show both sides of a debate and give the debate a human face.  I have found that class discussions have been much more informed and revealing after such shows.

October 23, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Health Issues During Campaign 2006

With the Iraq War not going particularly well and all the corruption scandals in Congress, this hasn't been a campaign season in which health care issues have played a large role.  In fact, such issues seem quite neglected.  However, the Senate race in Missouri is an exception.  In a recent ad, Claire McCaskill, Democratic candidate for Senate, distanced herself from her opponent by proclaiming her strong support of stem cell research.  The ad, starring Michael J. Fox, a person with Parkinson's Disease, is very moving.  Click here.

October 23, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)