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Contact IHLS

Institute of Health Law Studies
225 Cedar Street
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 239-0391

The Institute of Health Law Studies (IHLS) is an interdisciplinary center joining together legal, health, medical, and scientific communities to address important issues through advocacy, education, community service, and scholarship. IHLS is directed by Professor Joanna Sax, JD, PhD.

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Academic Programs

Health Law Pathways to Practice

Our health law curriculum contains "pathways to practice" in three distinct areas of health law. Please contact us at if you are interested in pursuing one of these pathways.

Pathway A: Representing Healthcare Organizations

  • Health Law & Policy (SWO)
  • Representing Healthcare Organizations
  • Practicing Healthcare Compliance
  • Healthcare Transactions
  • Administrative Law or Business Organizations
  • Internship

Pathway B: Regulatory/Pharmaceutical/Life Sciences

  • Health Law & Policy (SWO)
  • FDA Law
  • Patent Law
  • Licensing
  • Law, Science & Medicine
  • Internship

Pathway C: Medical Malpractice

  • Health Law & Policy (SWO)
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Risk Management
  • Trial Practice
  • Internship

Each pathway was designed through the collaborative effort of faculty and practitioners. All courses offered are subject to instructor availability, minimum enrollment requirements, and other factors. Please contact Professor Joanna Sax at for individualized counseling and course selection.

News & Events

Health Law Newsletter

Attend an upcoming Health Law Information Session

  • Check back soon for session information.

In the News

Scholarship & Publications

Bulletin of Health Policy & Law

The IHLS has its own peer-review journal, the Bulletin of Health Policy & Law. In addition to peer-review articles, the Bulletin provides an opportunity for students to publish short articles on recent developments in health law.

» Bulletin of Health Policy & Law website

Faculty Scholarship

California Western faculty members contribute to a greater understanding of the relationship between law, medicine, and science through their publications.

Recent publications include:

Professor Joanna K. Sax

  • Joanna K. Sax, Contours of GMO Regulation and Labeling, 18 SMU Sci. & Tech. L. Rev. (forthcoming 2017).
  • Joanna K. Sax, The GMO Debate Tex. A&M L. Rev. (forthcoming 2017).
  • Joanna K. Sax, Biotechnology and Consumer Decision-Making, 47 Seton Hall L. Rev. 433 (2017).
  • Joanna K. Sax & Neal Doran, Food Labeling and Consumer Associations with Health, Safety and Environment, 44 J.L. Med. & Ethics 680 (2016).
  • Steven H. Strauss & Joanna K. Sax, An End to Event-Based Regulation of GMO Crops, 34 Nature Biotechnology 474 (2016).

Professor Robert A. Bohrer

  • Interviewed on San Francisco public radio station KQED about a lawsuit filed against several pharmaceutical companies by two California counties claiming that the sale of prescription painkillers is creating a population of addicts.

Professor Glenn C. Smith

  • Interviewed by KPBS Radio and Television about the U.S. Supreme Court case, Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius, regarding religious freedom and the Affordable Care Act.

Faculty & Staff

IHLS Director

Joanna K. Sax
Joanna K. Sax
Professor Sax combines her background in basic biomedical science with her legal experience to address issues in the life sciences and the FDA.


Joanna K. Sax
Director, Institute of Health Law Studies
E. Donald Shapiro Professor of Law

Robert A. Bohrer
Professor of Law