In the Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors Clinic (MLPS), UC Hastings students develop key lawyering skills through representation of low-income older adult patients of UCSF and VA medical clinics. Students provide wrap-around representation in legal issues including advance health care planning, estate planning, public benefits (in-home care, medical insurance, income supports), housing, and other matters as needed to stabilize the patient’s situation, reduce stress, and improve health outcomes. Students meet with patients at an outpatient medical clinic and in their homes and collaborate directly with medical providers.
Over the course of the semester, students work with multiple clients from start to finish and learn about the complex intersection of law and health, the implications for an aging population, and the role of lawyers in combating poverty and health disparities. Students develop skills in interviewing, counseling, critical thinking, document drafting, project management, interdisciplinary collaboration, and “whole person” lawyering. Weekly seminar sessions enable students to reflect on their experiences representing low-income older adults, practice their lawyering skills, and deepen their understanding of socio-legal determinants of health.
Sara Huffman, JD
Equal Justice Works Fellow, Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors (MLPS)
Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors named finalist in Let's Get Healthy California Innovation Challenge
Sept./ Oct. 2014:
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