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Bioethics and the Law

A research guide designed to be of assistance to students taking Prof. Susan Goldberg's seminar.

Westlaw Tabs

You can create tabs in WESTLAW that will bring together libraries that deal with broad topics of law.  When in Westlaw, simply click on "Add a Tab," then choose "Add WESTLAW Tab," and select the topical tab for "Health Law."


You can add tabs in LEXIS to bring together libraries that are relevant to your topic.  In LEXIS, select "Add a Tab," then select "Medical" and/or "Health Care."

Federal Agencies

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the principal federal agency charged with protecting public health.   HHS oversees a wide variety of tasks and services, including research, public health, food and drug safety, health insurance, and many others:

Federal Statutes

Statutes relating to bioethics are generally included in Titles 21 and 42 of the United States Code, available through the federal government on


You can link to the United States Code through WESTLAW and LEXIS 


Cornell University Law School at:  

Congressional Legislation

Issues involving bioethics are current, controversial, and often under consideration by the House and Senate, U.S. Congressional reports and pending legislation can be essential to your research.  You can find legislative materials through LEXIS and WESTLAW.  You can also access federal legislation through Thomas at the Library of Congress.   Thomas provides the full text of Public Laws back to 1989.  Under Thomas' Bill Summary & Status, there is access to the text of bill digests back to 1973.

HeinOnline is a valuable research tool, and not just for PDFs of law reviews.  HeinOnline has federal libraries including:

  • U.S. Code
  • U.S. Federal Agency Documents, Decisions and Appeals,
  • U.S. Federal Legislative History Library
  • U.S. Statutes at Large
  • U.S. Supreme Court Library

Federal Regulations

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is the codification of the regulations published in the Federal Register by executive departments and agencies of the federal government.  The CFR is divided into 50 titles that represent broad subject areas.  Titles relating to health generally correspond to federal statutory titles 21 and 42.

International Law