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JD-MPH Joint Degree

JD/MPH Joint Degree

The joint Juris Doctor and Master of Public Health in Health Policy and Management (JD/MPH) program between Pitt Public Health and the University of Pittsburgh's School of Law provides students with an interdisciplinary curriculum in law and public health, integrating law, health policy, and management. Students prepare to address the legalities, issues and problems affecting personal and public health. 


Recent graduates hold the following positions:
  • health care compliance attorney
  • assistant chief counsel for litigation
  • Board of Health, Commissioner
  • county, city, or state health official
  • private practice attorney

Recent Essay and Thesis Titles

  • Evidence Influences and Patient Autonomy: Utilizing The Ecological Model to Maximize Justice and Autonomous Choice in the Legal Doctrine of Informed Consent
  • Political Use of the Prevention and Public Health Fund
  • The Somali Bantu Refugee Resettlement Experience and What we Can Learn from it


Graduates will be able to...
  • Contrast the main components of the organization, financing, and delivery of US health services (private and public)
  • Differentiate the legal and ethical bases for formal and informal health care, whether organized, financed, or delivered by public or private organizations
  • Evaluate methods of ensuring community and individual health in terms of preparedness, safety, and outcomes of health care
  • Assess public and private organizational policies with respect to their development, implementation, and evaluation
  • Apply systems thinking and performance improvement concepts to study outcomes and accessibility of care
  • Communicate health policy and management issues using appropriate market channels and technologies
  • Assess leadership skills for building partnerships
All graduates also achieve the core and cross-cutting competencies for Pitt Public Health MPH students.


  • 113 credits  (20 less than completing programs separately)
  • 8 semesters (2 less than completing degrees separately) 
  • Coursework in health policy and management
  • Coursework in public health foundations
  • Advanced coursework in health law
  • Masters essay 

JD/MPH Contacts


Elizabeth (Bjerke) Van Nostrand, JD
Co-director, JD/MPH Program

Jessica Dornin, MSL
Program coordinator


Mary Crossley, JD
Co-director, JD/MPH Program

Download the Joint Degree Brochure (PDF).

JD/MPH Brochure PDF 

JD/MPH news


Pioneers in computerized legal research: The story of the Pittsburgh system 

Pioneers in computerized legal research: The story of the Pittsburgh system

PITTSBURGH JOURNAL OF TECHNOLOGY LAW & POLICY -  HPM's Tina Batra Hershey and Dean Burke discuss the early pioneering work of researchers in the legal field who developed the "Pittsburgh System" a precursor to the computerized legal research tools ubiquitous today. (03/06/2018)

HPM’s Ware awarded Goldstein Award for work on Emergency Law Inventory (ELI) 

HPM’s Ware awarded Goldstein Award for work on Emergency Law Inventory (ELI)

JD/MPH student ALIX WARE (HPM ’19) was awarded the 2017 Bernard D. Goldstein Award in Environmental Health Disparities and in Public Health Practice for her work on the development of the Emergency Law Inventory (ELI). Created to help individuals navigate through 1,500 law summaries impacting volun... (12/08/2017)

Project ELI: Timely tool for emergency responders (video) 

Project ELI: Timely tool for emergency responders (video)

WHAT IS ELI? Check out this introductory video about the Emergency Law Inventory (ELI) and how to use it. The tool, developed by the Pitt Public Health Center for Public Health Practice, is particularly appropriate now as aid organizations struggle to respond to the devastating Texas aftermath of hu... (08/30/2017)
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