Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Liz Bishop


This unit deals with two primary aspects of professional practice in the health and social care system, namely the legal and ethical principles that govern the operation of the system and the behaviour of individuals within it. The unit commences with an introduction to the legal framework, covering common law, statute law and the legal responsibilities of health and social care professionals. Students are then introduced to the ethical framework, through an examination of ethical theory, professional ethics, confidentiality, informed consent and relationships with patients. The complex interrelationship between legal and ethical aspects of healthcare practice is explored.


By the completion of this unit, it is expected that the student will be able to:

  1. demonstrate knowledge of the legal framework pertinent to healthcare practice;
  2. explain why the study of health law is an essential aspect of professional practice;
  3. discuss issues related to justice in the healthcare system;
  4. develop an understanding of the nature of professional ethics and different ethical perspectives as related to healthcare; and
  5. understand the importance of confidentiality and informed consent.


Written assignments (2 x 2500 words): 100%

Hurdle requirement: 80% attendance at tutorials

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Liz Bishop