Sarah Hooper is the Executive Director of the UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science & Health Policy and Adjunct Professor of Law at UC Hastings College of the Law. Through the Consortium, she develops interprofessional programs for faculty and students, including educational curricula and degrees, joint research, and clinical training and service programs. In particular, Sarah led the Consortium’s effort to establish the Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors clinic (MLPS) and now as its Policy Director is working to scale the model locally and nationally.
Sarah’s research focuses on legal issues in aging and dementia care, including health care decision making and informed consent, capacity, elder financial abuse, the link between health and access to civil justice, and models of comprehensive and coordinated care. She is a 2018 Leaders for Health Equity Fellow with George Washington University.
Sarah teaches or has taught "Elder Law & Policy," “Law of End of Life Care,” “Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors Seminar,” “Concentration in Law & Health Science Seminar,” "Health Law: Research Compliance & Ethics" and “Master of Studies in Law for Healthcare Providers Seminar” at UC Hastings and is a frequent guest lecturer at UCSF.
Areas of Expertise (9)
Comprehensive and Coordinated Care
Health and Access to Civil Justice
Elder Financial Abuse
Health Care Decision Making
Legal Issues in Aging and Dementia Care
University of California, Hastings College of the Law: J.D., Law 2008
University of California, Santa Barbara: B.A., Law and Society 2005
University of London Queen Mary: Study Abroad, Law & English 2004
George Washington University School of Public Health: Leader in Health Equity Fellow, Health Equity
- American Bar Association
- California State Bar
- American Society of Law Medicine & Ethics
- American Association of Law Schools Section on Law Medicine & Healthcare
Media Appearances (8)
Medical Legal Practice Clinics for Seniors
Geri-Pal Podcast radio
On this weeks podcast, we have Sarah Hooper, J.D., the Executive Director of the UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy, an interprofessional partnership in education, research, and clinical training and service. We talk with Sarah about her work creating the Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors Clinic (MLPS) in which law students and faculty provide free legal assistance to low-income older patients at the UCSF Medical Center and at the San Francisco VA.
California Readies for Aid-in-Dying Law to Take Effect
KQED Forum with Michael Krasny radio
California’s End of Life Option Act goes into effect June 9. The law allows Californians who are terminally ill with six months or less to live to legally request a prescription for end-of-life medication. We discuss the law’s implementation with experts and what it means for patients, insurance companies and doctors– whether or not they choose to participate.
The Doctor’s New Prescription: A Lawyer
The New York Times online
At Lakeside there is a simpler solution, said Sarah Hooper, who teaches at the University of California Hastings College of the Law. “The physicians do the initial screenings, hear what their patients’ problems are, take the history — and they essentially write a prescription: ‘Go down the hall and see my friends at U.C. Hastings for help with this housing issue,’ ” she said...
Aid-In-Dying: Not So Easy
California Healthline online
“This will not be an on-demand service,” says Sarah Hooper, executive director of the UCSF / UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy. “The patient has to jump through a lot of hoops before accessing the prescription. Those hoops are designed to ensure that the patient has really thought about this and is making the decision voluntarily.”
Explanation of the Law
End of Life Option Act Response Conference 2015 online
To promote thoughtful deliberation on topics that will be relevant to healthcare systems as they create patient- centered policies to respond to the End of Life Option Act in California.
Medical Legal Partnership Helps Senior Veterans
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs online
When older Veterans get free legal advice along with their VA health care, good things happen.
'Silent Crime' -- Defrauding Elders Grows in Ethnic Communities
New America Media online
Falk teamed up with Sarah Hooper of the University of California’s Hasting Law School as part of the San Francisco Financial Elder Abuse Collaboration to produce a two-page “Blueprint for Action” outlining the need to increase the system’s capacity to respond to financial elder abuse cases...
The Need for Medical-Legal Dialogue in Care of Older Adults
I had asked my students, a group of health care providers and researchers who had come for a year of legal training, about their impressions of lawyers and of the legal system more generally. While some of the students noted positive attributes of lawyers such as in advocating social justice and fairness, there was a consistent thread of cynicism about the motivations and roles of lawyers...
Research Grants (5)
Leaders in Health Equity Fellowship
George Washington University
The mission of the Leaders in Health Equity Fellowship Program is to develop global leaders who understand the foundations of health inequity and have the knowledge, skills, and courage to build more equitable health systems and organizations.
Advancing Legal and Medical Collaboration in Advance Care Planning
John A. Hartford Foundation, ABA Commission on Law & Aging, UCSF, UC Hastings, American Academy of Hospice & Palliative Medicine
Convening national experts in medicine, law, nursing, social work, and policy to develop guidelines, best practices, and materials for medical-legal collaboration in advance care planning.
Optimizing Aging: A National Geriatrics Workforce Model to Secure the Safety Net for Underserved Seniors
Sub-Award from University of California, San Francisco
Deliver training in comprehensive advance care planning (medical, financial, and legal aspects) to health and social care providers within San Francisco City & County. Funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration.
Integration of Easy-to-Read, Culturally-Appropriate, Evidence-Based Advance Directives for All US States Into the PREPARE Website
Sub-Award from University of California, San Francisco
Research advance directive laws in all US states, draft language, test and validate with attorneys and patient/clients within medical-legal partnership network. Funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
The UCSF and UNMC Dementia Care Ecosystem: Using Innovative Technologies to Personalize and Deliver Coordinated Dementia Care
Sub-Award from University of California, San Francisco and University of Nebraska Medical Center
Design, deliver, and test a comprehensive advance care planning intervention (medical, financial, and legal aspects) within a navigated care model. Funded with a Health Care Innovations Award from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation
Selected Articles (6)
Possin KL, Merrilees J, Bonasera SJ, Bernstein A, Chiong W, Lee K, Wilson, L., Hooper S, Dulaney S, Braley T, Laohavanich S, Feuer, J, Clark A, Miller, B (2017) Development of an adaptive, personalized, and scalable dementia care program: Early findings from the Care Ecosystem. PLoS Med 14(3): e1002260. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1002260 Our objective was to develop and test a scalable model of dementia specialty care that complements primary care with additional caregiver support and education, medication consultation, and support in planning for future medical, financial, and legal decisions consistent with patient values. Care is delivered via the phone and web by unlicensed Care Team Navigators (CTNs), who are trained and supervised by a dementia specialist nurse, social worker, and pharmacist. This “Care Ecosystem” is being tested via a pragmatic randomized controlled trial. The care model was iteratively improved during the trial based on input from caregivers, primary care providers, and clinical team members. Based on the inputs, the care model was revised to enhance caregiver support, to clarify triage protocols, to include more strategies for managing problematic patient behaviors, to personalize care protocols, to better inform caregivers and patients about the services available, to adjust recruitment efforts to target the underserved, and to address CTN stress and burnout. The trial continues with the revised care model and ongoing evaluation of patient, caregiver, and health care cost outcomes. New implementation projects are adapting the care model to fit the priorities and workflows of three health care delivery organizations.
Hooper S and Chiong W (Ed.: Miller B. and Cummings J)
Given the crucial role of the human frontal lobes in decision making, deep ethical issues can arise in clinical management of, and in scientific research with, patients with frontal lobe dysfunction. Most crucially, how can we determine whether an impaired patient nonetheless has the capacity to consent to a clinical intervention, or to participate in a clinical research study? This chapter is intended as an overview of ethical and legal issues in the determination of decision- making capacity, particularly as it pertains to patients with frontal lobe dysfunction.
This article examines the effects of state regulation and civil class action litigation on corporate compliance with nurse staffing and quality standards, corporate strategies to manage staffing and quality, and corporate financial status of a large for-profit nursing ...
I had asked my students, a group of health care providers and researchers who had come for a year of legal training, about their impressions of lawyers and of the legal system more generally. While some of the students noted positive attributes of lawyers such as in advocating social justice and fairness, there was a consistent thread of cynicism about the motivations and roles of lawyers.
The need for effective civil legal advocacy for victims of elder financial abuse far outstrips current resources. This article examines reasons why California has yet to address financial abuse more widely, despite a rich legal environment and statutory innovations designed specifically to enhance the legal response. The authors outline recommendations to galvanize the civil legal community. Further, the article details a research and community engagement collaboration in San Francisco, California to make “the law matter.” The process and recommendations may assist other jurisdictions to identify legislative gaps and to increase the utility of current legal protections.
BACKGROUND: Advance directive law may compromise the clinical effectiveness of advance directives. PURPOSE: To identify unintended legal consequences of advance directive law that may prevent patients from communicating end-of-life preferences.
Health Law: Research Compliance & Ethics
Elder Law & Policy
Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors
Fall + Spring Sessions: - Healthcare Decisionmaking with Older Adults - Poverty, Health & the Law - Legal Ethics - Elder Abuse