The Consumer Health Advocacy certificate program at the Center for Patient Partnerships educates a diversity of learners interested in health advocacy. Students around the country come to this interdisciplinary health advocacy center to learn critical health advocacy skills while helping patients navigate the complex health care system. 

The Center for Patient Partnerships is a national resource for strengthening the consumer perspective in health care. We have graduate students from Law, Medicine, Pharmacy, Physician Assistant, Physical Therapy, Public Health, Social Work, Gender and Women's Studies, Engineering, and others participating in our certificate program. 

Additional opportunities are available in patient experience research and organizational and legislative policy advocacy through student-led “case to cause” projects. 

Click on the Requirements tab on the right side navigation bar for general program requirements. 

*The certificate requirements differ based on your discipline. Please email to talk to an advisor.

Field Placements, Clerkships, Fellowships, and Individual Courses: detailed descriptions can be found in the document UW Student opportunities. Please contact or call 608-263-7736 for an advising session to get started.

All currently enrolled graduate students at UW–Madison are eligible to pursue this certificate program. We do not require any health care knowledge/background. 

Please email or call 608-263-7736 to schedule an advising session to get started. 

Required Courses
LAW/​MED SC-M/​NURSING  768 Consumer Health Advocacy and Patient-Centered Care Clinical (Topic: Applied Advocacy Experience Introduction)1-7
LAW/​MED SC-M/​NURSING  768 Consumer Health Advocacy and Patient-Centered Care Clinical (Topic: Applied Advocacy Experience Advanced)1-7
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: Models of System Level Advocacy)2-3
Choose one from one of the topics below:
Law, Regulation and Ethics 1
LAW 744 Administrative Law3
LAW 905 Bioethics and the Law2-4
LAW 906 Law, Science and Biotechnology Seminar2-4
LAW 935 Health Law and Administration Seminar2-3
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: Food & Drug Law)2-3
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: ERISA)2-3
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: Health Care Fraud and Abuse)2-3
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: Public Health Law)2-3
LAW 940 Law and Contemporary Problems (Topic: Mental Health Law)2-3
MED HIST 559 Topics in Ethics and History of Medicine3
MED HIST 545 Ethical and Regulatory Issues in Clinical Investigation1
PHILOS/​MED HIST  558 Ethical Issues in Health Care3
Health Economics 2
POP HLTH 650 Special Topics (Topic: Advanced Seminar in Health & Mental Health Economics)1-6
PUB AFFR/​ECON/​POP HLTH  548 The Economics of Health Care3-4
ECON/​POP HLTH  848 Health Economics1-3
PUB AFFR 864 Health Policy and Policy Design3
Policy, Management and Public Health 3
NURSING 703 Health Care and Public Policy3
NURSING 761 Health Program Planning, Evaluation, and Quality Improvement3
POP HLTH/​ENVIR ST  471 Introduction to Environmental Health3
POP HLTH 650 Special Topics (Topic: Health Care Management and Policy)1-6
POP HLTH/​I SY E  703 Quality of Health Care: Evaluation and Assurance1-3
PUBLHLTH 780 Evidence-Based Decision-Making3
SOC WORK 875 Health, Aging, and Disability Policy and Services2
  1. Develop advocacy capacity that emphasizes patient empowerment.
  2. Develop critical health advocacy competencies including communication, collaborative decision making, cultural humility, and ethics.
  3. Experience the discipline of advocacy from a case-based perspective, and explore how various key advocacy roles can be useful in specific situations.
  4. Gain familiarity with the U. S. health care delivery system and the systemic problems that give rise to the need for advocacy at the individual organizational and policy levels.