HCMT-535: Health Care Law

Course Description and Prerequisite

Students learn to apply elements of regulation, law and ethics to the administrative process in a variety of healthcare settings and situations. Healthcare administrators can avoid many legal disputes by understanding basic concepts such as patient rights, informed consent and privacy regulations. Course themes include the legal barriers that interfere with process improvement, malpractice, and the limits on sharing information across institutions. Students analyze recent legal developments, including the Affordable Care Act, medical marijuana, and right to die legislation.

Prerequisite: HCMT 515: Health Care System and Design Innovation

http://classlist.champlain.edu/ (Links to an external site.)


Student Centered Learning Outcomes

Analyze the conflicts between the “medical culture” and “legal culture” in healthcare systems and develop methods (process, policy) to reconcile these differences in a manner that creates a practical, realistic operational environment.

Using concepts of medical liability and malpractice, create guidelines for managers to use to determine if a particular case should be referred to legal counsel.

Analyze and evaluate various patient rights doctrines, and explain the practical, operational ramifications of their proper and improper execution.

Using the concept of “continuity of care”, evaluate the dispositions of case-study patients, create protocols that reflect best practice, and assess the practical consequences of proper and improper interpretations of the regulations.

In compliance with privacy regulations, reconcile the conflicting demands of patient privacy and medico/ethical considerations. In compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements of healthcare organizations, such as professional and facility licensure, accreditation, and certificate of need, create innovative policy and processes that will assure organizational compliance and employee stewardship.

Assess and evaluate the care disparities created by the often conflicting priorities inherent in the multitude of statutes and regulations that govern public insurance programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, and propose policy that could lead to equitable access, in compliance with specific rules related to fraud and abuse.

Assess the impact of evolving healthcare system policies and regulations upon statutes related to privacy and security (HIPAA), payment methodologies, universal coverage.

Through the use of creative thinking and innovative design, conceptualize new paradigms of government interaction with the healthcare system through its regulatory domain.


Textbook(s) and Technology Requirements

Required Texts

There is no textbook required for this course. Links are embedded in the course itself. Additional research is also required.


Technology Requirements

Information on the technology in all CPS courses can be found in the Student Resource Center.


Topic Outline

  • Week 1: Overview of Legal System
    • Hierarchy of Laws
    • Brief Structure of the Legal System
    • Legal Thinking
  • Week 2: Patient Rights
    • Contract Formation & Termination
    • Informed Consent
    • Surrogate Decision-making & Advance Directives
    • Aid in Dying
  • Week 3: Privacy & Records
    • Traditional Privacy Law
    • HIPAA
    • Records & Data Compliance
  • Week 4: Litigation
    • Liability Basics
    • Medical Negligence
    • Medical Wrongful Death
  • Week 5: Regulation of Licenses and Institutions
    • Professions
    • Institutions
  • Week 6: Additional Issues
    • Government Programs & Compliance
    • Business Governance & Best Practices
      • Sarbanes-Oxley
      • Stark/Anti Referral
      • Antitrust
      • Employment Law
      • Discrimination
    • Health Insurance Regulation
  • Week 7: Internal Governance of Institutions
    • The Board
    • The Management
  • Week 8: The Future of Healthcare Law
    • ACA
    • Further Proposed Reforms
    • Capstone Project


Methods of Assessment

Your final grade will be determined based on:

Graded ElementsPercentage
 Discussions 45%
 Assignments 40%
 Final Assignment 15%
 Total  100%
 Extra Credit: IDEA Survey  1%



Weekly discussions are an integral part of learning at Champlain College and represent a significant portion of a student’s overall grade. In order to be successful, students should:

  1. Post a thorough, well-crafted initial response that fully addresses and develops all aspects of the prompt by the due date.
  2. Engage substantively throughout the discussion period by responding to others with questions or comments that demonstrate interest, build upon the ideas of others, and encourage elaboration.
  3. Apply and integrate concepts from this course as well as from quality resources including journals, websites, readings from another class, relevant work or life experience, etc.
  4. Demonstrate attention to style, structure, grammar, etiquette, and proper citation of references to maintain academic integrity.

Discussion grades are determined using the rubric below. The descriptions show what exemplary work looks like for each aspect of an overall discussion.

Discussion Rubric
CriteriaDescriptionMax Points
ApplicationExplicitly and thoroughly explains, applies, and integrates a) concepts from this or other courses, b) outside resources or research, c) life experiences, and/or d) processes used to solve problems.30 pts
Critical ThinkingClearly articulates a desire to a) reflect, b) explore possibility, c) recognize ambiguity, d) question assumptions, and/or e) search for logical relationships among ideas. Selects, analyzes, and synthesizes relevant information to demonstrate original thinking.30 pts
CollaborationFosters collaborative learning while a) problem-solving, b) respectfully challenging others, and/or c) expanding thinking through responses and reflection with other learners throughout the week. Builds on classmate and instructor contributions to deepen the conversation.30 pts
PresentationDemonstrates attention to APA/MLA style and structure, adheres to rules of grammar and etiquette, and properly cites references to literature and course materials.10 pts
Total Points: 100


Written Assignments:

Your written assignments will be assessed using the following rubric:

Health Care Administration Assignment Rubric
CriteriaDescriptionMaximum Points
Appropriate and Relevant ContentSubmission is articulate and relevant to course learning objectives, and applies those concepts to workplace situations. Submission provides clear evidence from the course readings and lecture information that demonstrates sound interpretation and reasoning. All opinion-based comments relate to the assignment and are fully supported by evidence from the course resources and other research.50
Innovation and Critical AnalysisSubmission expands the analysis beyond the scope of presented materials by providing evidence of reflection and insight, and integration of original and practical ideas. Submission provides solutions or positions based on well supported conclusions (i.e. evaluated relative to the issues of the assignment); Submission explores sound ideas in nontraditional ways. Submission recognizes the interrelatedness of stakeholders; Submission includes points that are crucial to the analysis and clearly addresses alternative points of view through integration of various perspectives.30
Professional Language and StyleSubmission is free of spelling and grammar errors. Language of submission clearly and effectively communicates ideas. Submission style is consistently professional. APA style is used for references and formatting and contains no errors.10
Overall AssessmentSubmission viewed in entirety; overall flow and achievement of learning objectives.10
Maximum Total Points: 100


Student Resources & Policies

Academic Honesty Policy

Champlain College students are expected to be familiar with and adhere to the College’s policy for Academic Honesty. (Links to an external site.) Academic honesty entails creating original assignments, using your own words, and when using the words and ideas of others, documenting those sources using the method specified in this course. Please consult with your instructor if you are in doubt. Violations of the policy could result in a grade of F on the assignment or in the course as well as dismissal from the College.


Grading Policies

CPS Grading Policy (Links to an external site.)

Grading Scale (Links to an external site.)


Student Resources
Accessibility and Accommodations (Links to an external site.)Champ Support (Links to an external site.)
Bookstore (Links to an external site.)Library Resources (Links to an external site.)
Canvas Support (Links to an external site.)Online Tutoring (Smarthinking) (Links to an external site.)
Career Services (Links to an external site.)Student Accounts (Links to an external site.)


Course summary: