Faculty Directory


Cornell University, BA 1979
Harvard University, JD 1982


Professor Parmet, a leading expert on health, disability and public health law, directs the law school’s Center for Health Policy and Law. She also holds a joint appointment with Northeastern University’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs in recognition of her national leadership in interdisciplinary thinking and problem solving on issues related to public health. In addition, she is co-editor of the law school’s SSRN online publications, Human Rights and the Global Economy and the Northeastern University School of Law Public Law and Legal Theory Paper Series. In 2016, Professor Parmet was honored with the prestigious Jay Healey Health Law Teachers Award by the American Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics (ASLME) at its annual conference. In 2022, the American Public Health Association (APHA) Law Section selected her for its Lifetime Achievement in Public Health Law Award..

Professor Parmet has published articles on public health, bioethics, discrimination, health law and AIDS law. She is author of Constitutional Contagion: Covid, the Courts and Public Health (Cambridge University Press, 2023) and Populations, Public Health, and the Law (Georgetown University Press, 2009); co-author of  The Health of Newcomers: Immigration, Health Policy, and the Case for Global Solidarity (NYU Press, 2017) and Ethical Health Care (Prentice Hall, 2005); and co-editor of Debates on U.S. Health Care (Sage Press, 2012).

Professor Parmet clerked with Chief Judge Levin H. Campbell of the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and practiced with a large law firm prior to joining the Northeastern faculty. She is the associate editor for law and ethics for the American Journal of Public Health. She previously served as a member of the boards of directors (and a past president of the board) of Health Law Advocates and Health Care for All and was a member of the ABA’s AIDS Coordinating Committee and Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law.

In 1998, Professor Parmet acted as co-counsel in Bragdon v. Abbott, the first AIDS/HIV case to come before the US Supreme Court under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Professor Parmet’s client, Sidney Abbott, had been refused treatment by her dentist when she revealed her HIV-positive status, although she was asymptomatic. The high court said that because she was infected with HIV, she was entitled to the protections of the Americans with Disabilities Act. In 2012 Professor Parmet was lead counsel in Finch v. Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority, in which the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court found that a state law denying state subsidized health insurance to legal immigrants was unconstitutional.

Fields of Expertise

  • Bioethics
  • Civil Rights
  • Constitutional Law
  • Disability Law
  • First Amendment
  • Health Law and Policy
  • Medical Issues
  • Public Health Law and Policy
  • Torts

Selected Works

Wendy E. Parmet

Matthews Distinguished University Professor of Law and Faculty Director, Center for Health Policy and Law; Professor of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs


77 Cargill Hall
416 Huntington Avenue
Curriculum Vitae @weparmet BePress Selected Works SSRN Author Page Expert Comments on COVID-19 Outbreak