Online Master’s in Health Law & Policy FAQs

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Q: What is the online learning experience like?

A:  One of our favorite things about this program is that there are no set class times. However, there are instructor-led live web sessions available. They’re meant to be an enrichment piece, and are never mandatory.  Our current student population really enjoy these interactions which are always recorded so you won’t miss anything if you’re not able to attend. Many of our students agree they receive much more interaction with their instructor and peers than they had initially expected. We strongly encourage these relationships as they often extend beyond the scope of the program.

Q: What does the program structure look like?

A:  The program is designed to be taken one course at a time.  Each course is seven weeks long and there’s a one-week break between each course.  Students are expected to spend approximately fifteen hours per week on study in order to be successful in their course. These fifteen hours per week may not necessarily be online, and it also includes your reading, research, assignments, study time and so forth. Both the Master of Arts and the Masters of Laws programs have three entry dates per year: January, May and September. Although the September start is actually at the end of August this year.  The program is a hundred percent online, and there is never any reason for you to visit campus, however, if you are in the area, you are absolutely welcome.

Q: Next question is for Professor Dolgin. How to you see the current career outlook for people in health law? Do you see any trends?

A: Ha-ha well, ten years ago, I might have answered this differently. The employment picture in health care today is just remarkably positive. Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, more than a million new jobs have been created in the health care area. More than a hundred million people in the U.S. now receive health care through Medicaid and Medicare. These are giant programs really desperately looking for people with training in law and in health law- both lawyers and non-lawyers. The nation’s aging population suggests that health care is going to become ever the more important. Right now, there are more jobs than there are people to fill them.

People who can navigate this system, who can understand and use health law and policy are going to be in demand within the nation’s workforce. There’s no question about it. It’s going to be very useful to know how law and policy affect patients and how they affect hospitals and other health care facilities. People with this kind of knowledge and with good communication skills – which is very important in many, many jobs areas will be very, very well-positioned to interface with lawyers and with the government.

Attorneys and policy experts can participate in many new practice opportunities. For example, governmental, non-profit, and corporate groups working on big data in health care will need many more people who have knowledge in health law and policy. Knowledge these areas is essential for – just to name some fields – fraud and abuse enforcement, programs aimed at protecting health information, privacy, health care merges, health care acquisitions, with regard to coverage subsidies, with regard to the structure of medical homes, and for planning programs of emergency preparedness which goes to the public health field.

Obviously, none of us can guarantee that anybody will get a job but if you’re looking for a job, health care and health care law is the place to look today.