HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Announcing the Symposium "The Role of States in Federal Health Care Reform"

Please join the Kansas Journal of Law & Public Policy 2010-2011 Symposium, "The Role of States in Federal Health Care Reform," on Friday, Feb. 11, 2011. The symposium will address the new federal health care reform legislation and its effects at the state level. It will be held at the University of Kansas School of Law in the Stinson Morrison Hecker Lecture Hall, Room 104, Green Hall.

- Welcome and Introductory Remarks, Elizabeth Leonard Weeks, Professor of Law, University of Kansas.

- Sandy Praeger, Kansas Insurance Commissioner, "A View from the Insurance Commissioner on the Health Care Reform."   

- Tim Greaney, Professor of Law, Saint Louis University School of Law, "Designing Health Insurance Exchanges to Promote Competition."

- Jonathan Adler, Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University School of Law, "Cooperation, Commandeering, or Crowding Out? Federal Intervention and State Choices in Health Care Policy."

- Abigail Moncrieff, Associate Professor of Law, Boston University School of Law, "The Positive Case for Federal Health Care Regulation."

- Mark Hall, Professor of Law, Wake Forest University School of Law, "The Role of Risk Adjustment under the Affordable Care Act."

- Dr. Andrew Allison, Executive Director, Kansas Health Policy Authority Board, "State     Choices and Challenges in the Wake of Federal Health Reform Legislation."

-  Dr. Marcia Nielsen, Vice Chancellor for Public Policy and Planning, University of  Kansas Medical Center, "Understanding Federal Health Reform: Setting the Stage for State Implementation." 

Registration & Breakfast: Advance registration is appreciated but not required. Please RSVP online by Friday, Feb. 4 to let us know you will attend the program. Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. on the day of the symposium. CLE Credit:  We are seeking approval to offer seven hours of continuing legal education credit for Kansas and Missouri. There is no charge. Those wishing to receive CLE credit may obtain materials at the door. Questions? Please contact symposium editors Jessie Riley and TJ Trum at

January 6, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Call for Papers on Public Health and Federal Health Reform

The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics will host a thematic Issue on the topic of "Public Health Reform: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Implications for the Public's Health."

Enactment of the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) represents a monumental political achievement and promises dramatic changes for the United States health care delivery system. But what impact will the law have on public health? PPACA's primary aim is improving access to comprehensive, affordable health insurance coverage. Improved access to insurance should improve access to medical care which then should improve the health of individuals and, thereby, the population. Was public health merely an afterthought in the comprehensive package of reforms, or does PPACA offer real possibilities for strengthening the public health system and improving the population's health?

This issue seeks scholarly commentary on the public health impact of federal health reform. In addition to improving access to health insurance, PPACA promises to expand government health care programs, promote primary care and prevention, improve quality of care, increase the health care workforce, and invest in outreach, and education. Specifically in the public health realm, PPACA contains provisions addressing oral health, workplace wellness, menu labeling, tanning salons, immunization, obesity, diabetes, breast cancer, and health disparities.

This is an open call for papers from any perspective, concerning any aspect of the issue. We are primarily interested in shorter papers (10 - 30 double-spaced pages; 3000 - 9000 words, exclusive of endnotes), although longer paper will receive careful consideration. Click here for JLME's style guidelines. Please submit an abstract by February 15, 2011. Papers will be due May 15, 2011, for publication Fall 2011. Early submissions are appreciated. All correspondence should be directed to Elizabeth Weeks Leonard at

January 4, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Top SSRN Health Law Downloads October 31 to December 30, 2010

Top SSRN Health Law Downloads October 31 to December 30, 2010:

Rank Downloads Paper Title
1 333 Oy Yes, the Healthcare Penalty is Unconstitutional
Steven J. Willis, Nakku Chung,
University of Florida - Fredric G. Levin College of Law, Unaffiliated Authors - affiliation not provided to SSRN,
Date posted to database: November 7, 2010
Last Revised: November 8, 2010
2 157 The Case of Plain Packaging for Cigarettes - an Overview
Alberto Alemanno, Enrico Bonadio,
HEC Paris - Law Department, City University London,
Date posted to database: September 24, 2010
Last Revised: September 24, 2010
3 148 The Regulation of Surrogate Motherhood in Greece
Aristides N. Hatzis,
University of Athens - Department of Philosophy & History of Science,
Date posted to database: October 10, 2010
Last Revised: October 10, 2010
4 113 The Applicability of Competition Law to the German Social Security System (Sozialversicherung und Kartellrecht) (German)
Christian Kersting, Sabine Faust,
Heinrich Heine University of Duesseldorf - Faculty of Law, Heinrich-Heine Universitaet Duesseldorf - Faculty of Law,
Date posted to database: November 16, 2010
Last Revised: November 19, 2010
5 93 Taking the Temperature: A Survey of the EU Law on Competition and State Aid in the Healthcare Sector
Wolf Sauter, Johan van de Gronden,
Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC), Radboud University Nijmegen,
Date posted to database: November 5, 2010
Last Revised: November 9, 2010
6 72 Accountable Care Organizations: A New New Thing with Some Old Problems
Thomas L. Greaney,
Saint Louis University School of Law,
Date posted to database: September 20, 2010
Last Revised: September 21, 2010
7 71 Promoting Societal and Juridical Receptivity to Rehabilitation: The Role of Therapeutic Jurisprudence
David B. Wexler, Michael S. King,
University of Puerto Rico - School of Law, Monash University - Faculty of Law,
Date posted to database: December 10, 2010
Last Revised: December 10, 2010
8 66 Is Deidentification Sufficient to Protect Health Privacy in Research?
Mark A. Rothstein,
University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law,
Date posted to database: September 22, 2010
Last Revised: September 22, 2010
9 59 Meaningful Use and Certification of Health Information Technology: What About Safety?
Sharona Hoffman, Andy Podgurski,
Case Western Reserve University - School of Law, Case Western Reserve University,
Date posted to database: October 26, 2010
Last Revised: November 5, 2010
10 58 Solving the Drug Settlement Problem: The Legislative Approach
Michael A. Carrier,
Rutgers University School of Law - Camden,
Date posted to database: December 23, 2009
Last Revised: December 14, 2010

January 3, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

ONC Publishes Final Rule Establishing Permanent Certification Program

The Office of the National Coordinator issued a final rule today establishing the permanent certification program for health information technology (HIT).  The permanent program is expected to begin on January 1, 2012.

The final rule, which is scheduled for publication in the January 7, 2011 Federal Register, may currently be found here. Hat tip to the Alston & Bird Health Information Technology (HIT) Task Force.

January 3, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Health Law and Policy Faculty Position

Northeastern University School of Law and the Bouvé College of Health Sciences at Northeastern University are seeking a full time faculty member at the Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, or Full Professor rank committed to health law and policy. This will be a tenure-track or tenured position with full salary support from the University. The appointment will be to both units; tenure may be at either. 

Applicants must hold a JD, PhD, or comparable degree from an accredited institution. Applicants with dual degrees are particularly encouraged to apply. Applicants must demonstrate an accomplished record of teaching and scholarship either in law or in a health policy-related field, such as health services research, public health, or health economics. Areas of particular interest include: health delivery systems, public and private reimbursement systems, health care quality improvement, comparative health care systems, law and policy issues relating to the pharmaceutical industry, elder care, long-term care, fraud and abuse, health disparities, and health reform. Expertise in empirical research will be highly regarded. Candidates must be committed to interdisciplinary research and collaboration and be willing to teach at both the School of Law and the Bouvé College of Health Sciences. Compensation will be commensurate with education, training, and experience and includes an outstanding benefits package. 

Additional Information:  Northeastern University is a national research university that has recently undertaken a major strategic commitment to developing outstanding research and educational programs in health policy, health care management, and related areas. To support this initiative, the University has established a university-level center dedicated to health policy and health services research.

Northeastern University has a strong tradition of diversity and accessibility. The search committee is especially interested in qualified candidates who can contribute, through their research, teaching, and or service to the diversity and excellence of the academic community. We also encourage applications from persons whose characteristics will further our commitment to diversity, including racial and ethnic minorities, women, persons with disabilities, gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgendered persons.

How To Apply: Applications must be submitted online by visiting the College website or here and click on "Faculty Positions."  Applicants should submit a formal letter of interest, along with curriculum vitae and the names and addresses of three references.  Applications will be reviewed upon receipt and the search will continue until the position is filled.

More information regarding this position can be obtained by contacting Professor Wendy Parmet, Chair, Appointments Committee, at 77 Cargill Hall, 400 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA  02115, or via email at

January 3, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Is There Evidence of E-Health’s Benefits?

The WSJ Health Blog writes:

With the U.S. and the U.K. heading full steam towards electronic medical records and other health IT applications, how much evidence is there that they improve care?

Not a whole lot, according to a review of existing research on the topic published this week by PLoS Medicine. While governments and other proponents are claiming that digitizing health records can save lives and increase efficiency, the review’s “key conclusion is that these claims need to be scrutinized before people invest quite large sums of money in these technologies,” Aziz Sheikh, lead author of the study and a professor of primary care research and development at the Center for Population Health Sciences at the University of Edinburgh, tells the Health Blog.

Sheikh and his colleagues scrutinized 53 reviews of the evidence surrounding technologies including electronic medical records, computerized provider order entry and computerized decision-support systems. The strength of the evidence varied from technology to technology, but in general the review found that “many of the clinical claims made about the most commonly deployed [digital health] technologies cannot be substantiated by the empirical evidence,” the authors write.

There probably are benefits to be had from digitizing health processes, says Sheikh, but they are likely more modest than what’s being talked about. For example, access to care may be improved by remote monitoring via email, phone or text messages. And electronic prescribing seems to boost efficiency according to available evidence, Sheikh says, though larger studies with long-term follow-up are necessary to see if those systems save patient lives.

The root of the overenthusiasm for health IT is a “belief that technology equates with modernization equates with benefits,” says Sheikh.

The research does show some “demonstrable improvements in outcomes” at “centers of real excellence where people have developed systems really carefully and they’ve undergone a lot of evaluation and iteration” to be sure they fit with people’s needs, he says. But those systems have been developed over a decade or so, with extensive clinical involvement. Simply dropping a pre-fab system into a hospital will not likely produce the same results, he says.

January 2, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)