91415 - Eu Health Law

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Legal Studies (cod. 9062)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course unit, students: - possess an in-depth knowledge about the supranational legal mechanisms concerning health, with an emphasis on patient mobility and the cooperation between Member States to face transboundary health crises; - can figure out (and solve) problems affecting the transboundary development of health policies at the European level, especially the provision of health services, and are capable to assess the abovementioned mechanisms in the framework of the applicable international legal regime, in particular the World Health Organization.

Course contents

The programme will focus on the protection of healthcare in the European Union and most notably will cover the following topics: the major constitutional and political issues underlying this subject; the competences of the EU in the field of healthcare; healthcare as an economic freedom; healthcare as a fundamental right; healthcare as a sectoral policy of the European Union: governance, institutional actors and regulatory framework; the case law of the Court of Justice on health services and access to cross-border healthcare; the pharmaceutical and medical devices market; the digitisation of healthcare systems and artificial intelligence systems; the healthcare sector vis-à-vis competition rules; preparedness and response planning in the event of serious cross-border health threats: the Union's response to COVID-19.

With the aim of allowing students to plan their study activity in advance and going hand in hand with the course, the Professors will upload on the Virtuale platform the “Course Calendar", which specifies the topics that will be covered in the various modules of which the course is composed.


A. de Ruijter, EU Health Law & Policy The Expansion of EU Power in Public Health and Health Care, Oxford Studies in European Law, 2019. In particular: chapters 1 (paras 1, 2 and 3), 3 (paras 3.5, 3.6, 3.7), 4, 5, 6 (paras 1, 4, and 5) and 7.

The textbook is available from the Sistema Bibliotecario di Ateneo dell’Università.

Several teaching materials (judgments, acts, documents, slides) will be uploaded on the Virtuale [https://virtuale.unibo.it/] platform on a weekly basis. These will supplement and complete the topics covered in the textbook in the light of what will be discussed in class, paying particular attention to the most topical aspects of each part of the course.

Some of these materials, shared with students in advance of the relevant classes, are specifically designed to enable their active participation, in accordance with what stated in the “Teaching methods” section.

Teaching methods

The course will be highly interactive. Theoretical issues will be confronted with practical cases in order to allow students to understand how the relevant EU regulations are developed and implemented, and how they impact on public health at national level.

Moreover, attending students will be asked to actively participate in class discussions on the topics covered during the classes as well as on the proposed case studies, and they will occasionally be asked to prepare in advance judgments or other reading materials uploaded on the Virtuale platform. The course will host national and foreign professors and experts (also via webinars). The dates and topics of the seminars will be timely communicated.

Assessment methods

The attending students’ learning will be constantly verified through discussions and debates.

Students who attend 80% of the course (lectures, seminars and case presentations organised in class) will be assessed on the basis of a written test which will take place during the week following the end of the course.

The test will consist of 20 multiple-choice questions and one open-ended question, the latter to be chosen from 3 options proposed and answered in written (max 3000 characters).

Students will have 60 minutes to complete the test and send it by e-mail to the Professor. It is not permitted to consult legal sources, judgments, textbooks and/or other materials.

With regard to the final mark, expressed in thirtieths, correct answers to the multiple-choice questions will account for one point each (for a total of maximum 20 points), while the open-ended question will account for 10 points (maximum). The assessment criteria for the latter part of the test (i.e. the open-ended question) are set out below.

The written test mark may be increased by up to 10% taking into account the student’s participation during the course.

Students who have scored below 18/30 (in total) in the written exam and those non-attending students the 80% of the said activities will be required to sit for a final oral exam. Also in this case, the final mark will be expressed in thirtieths.

In both cases, the examination will focus on topics related to those mentioned in the ‘Contents’ section. Attending and non-attending students may therefore refer to the textbook and to the teaching materials uploaded on the Virtuale platform (slides, sentences, articles, proceedings, etc.).

As regards the open-ended question (second part of the written test reserved for attending students) and the oral examination, the following assessment criteria will be taken into account to assign the grade:

- knowledge and understanding of the notions and principles of the subject and of the legal concepts on which the questions focus, and ability to apply them to concrete cases (70%);

- appropriate use of technical and legal vocabulary, ability to analyse and evaluate relevant sources and acquisition of the study and research method (30%).

Students shall book themselves into the desired exam session via the AlmaEsami platform, in accordance with the conditions and deadlines set by the University. Further information on AlmaEsami here .

Teaching tools

Teaching materials for regular attenders (slides, documents, bibiographical references) will be circulated to students via the Virtuale platform.

Students who, due to documented health reasons, experience difficulties in finding the course materials, in participating actively in the course itself, or in taking the examination in accordance with the modalities mentioned above, shall report these difficulties to the Professor by e-mail within the first two weeks of the course.

Office hours

See the website of Giacomo Di Federico


Good health and well-being Gender equality

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.