PSU’s College of Graduate Studies Introduces Health Care Law Online Course

August 20th, 2007 by Adam

PLYMOUTH, N.H. –The health care industry is one of the largest parts of the global economy. In 2004, America’s total health care bill came to $1.8 trillion, or about $6,400 per person. In 10 years, this amount is expected to rise to $11,000 per person annually.

Along with the dizzying rise in costs, new medical technologies, medicines and ethical dilemmas are routinely introduced to the health care industry. In 1999, the Institute of Medicine generated a report indicating that up to 98,000 deaths were caused annually in the United States by medical error, raising awareness of a critical issue that had gone unnoticed for years.

Since then, efforts have been made to improve this situation through policy and legislation. For those who work caring for others, the need for new information and education is critical. Plymouth State University’s College of Graduate Studies is meeting this need with the introduction this fall of a new, online course called Health Care Law and Ethics, part of a four-course graduate certificate in Health Care Administration,.

Designed specifically for health care professionals the course will be taught by attorney Constance A. Morrison, who also holds a Doctorate in Nursing Practice, an MBA, and is a nurse practitioner.

“It is critical that all health care professionals have an intimate knowledge of the law as it relates to their profession,” Morrison said. “In this day and age I can’t imagine working in this industry without it.”

Morrison’s unique background and expertise allows her to lead discussions in areas including; the legal system in the United States, the impact of state and federal regulatory bodies on legal and ethical issues, tort law, contract and anti- trust issues, personal, managerial and corporate liability, managed care, nursing law, medical staff issues, issues of consent, information management and health care records, reporting requirements, organ donation and transplantation, patient rights, malpractice insurance, labor relations, employment law, and risk reduction.

“I use a forward-looking approach with this course,” Morrison said. “By including risk management strategies my colleagues will be better equipped to be proactive and anticipate potential issues in their workplace versus having to be reactive and dealing with matters that many times could have been avoided.”

Morrison added that the online format of the course creates an excellent student experience.

“I am able to communicate with students both collectively and individually in a way that enhances their experience,” Morrison said. “The course content is self-contained so people will be equipped to apply these risk management principles upon completion of the course.”

    The online course focuses on:

  • The principles and theories of law and ethics as it relates to health care delivery.
  • Law as it relates to health care management and administration.
  • Examination of the application of laws in relation to health care liability and risks facing administrators, managers and practitioners.
  • Providing a foundation in analyzing ethical dilemmas.

The course begins on September 10. For additional information about the Health Care Administration program contact Craig Zamzow at (603) 535-3020 or visit

Media queries contact Christopher M. Williams at or (603) 535-2476.