Onshore (Australia) Program
1 x 5-day intensive workshop per semester
95 hours of independent study per semester

Offshore (Singapore) Program
2 x 2-day workshops per semester
2 x 2-hour tutorial per semester
99 hours of independent study per semester
Enrolment not permitted
HSMT9010 has been successfully completed
Course context

Topic only available to students meeting the eligibility requirements for entry to the postgraduate health administration courses.

Assignments; Tutorial participation
Topic description

This topic provides an introduction to principles of legal reasoning. It surveys most of the important current frameworks, issues, and questions in health law. For students who have not had legal training, the topic assumes no legal knowledge, and has relevance to a broad cross-section of health professionals. The topic also addresses issues of health and research ethics.

The syllabus includes:

  • The legal system; precedent; case analysis; statutory interpretation
  • Legal research: primary sources; secondary sources; books in the library; internet research
  • Management of patient and client information
  • Negligence; intentional torts
  • Medical ethics; reproductive technology and abortion; life and death issues; health professionals in the courts; disciplinary proceedings
  • Working within the law; contractual issues; workplace law issues; statutes controlling health services delivery; mechanism of law reform
  • Foundations of health and research ethics
Educational aims

This topic aims to:

  • Develop students' understanding of the nature and importance of the constitutional and legal framework in which the health system operates
  • Inform students about the specific laws which impact upon health service management and delivery including the legal duties that health services and professionals have to clients
  • Develop skills in legal research and writing
  • Develop an appreciation of the law as an expression of policy in health as well as a set of rules
  • Develop an appreciation of health and research ethics
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Discuss and critique principles of legal reasoning and their relevance in areas of health law and population health
  2. Discuss and critique features of the legal system and how they influence the practice of healthcare
  3. Discuss and critique prominent issues in health law and ethics
Research and write on health law topics

Key dates and timetable

(1), (2)

Each class is numbered in brackets.
Where more than one class is offered, students normally attend only one.

Classes are held weekly unless otherwise indicated.


If you are enrolled for this topic, but all classes for one of the activities (eg tutorials) are full,
contact your College Office for assistance. Full classes frequently occur near the start of semester.

Students may still enrol in topics with full classes as more places will be made available as needed.

If this padlock appears next to an activity name (eg Lecture), then class registration is closed for this activity.

Class registration normally closes at the end of week 2 of each semester.

Classes in a stream are grouped so that the same students attend all classes in that stream.
Registration in the stream will result in registration in all classes.
  Unless otherwise advised, classes are not held during semester breaks or on public holidays.