Bowser, Rene

Rene Bowser

Associate Professor

(651) 962-4812
(800) 328-6819, Ext. 2-4812

1000 LaSalle Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55403-2015

Office Location: MSL 455

J.D., Stanford Law School

LL.M., Georgetown University Law Center

M.A., Economics, Northwestern University

B.A., University of Maryland

After receiving his J.D., he practiced law with major law firms in the San Francisco area from 1994-1997, specializing in the field of health law. He has served as an advisor to the Department of Health & Human Services and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Center for Race & Bioethics.

Professor Bowser’s current research focuses on the impact of medical and bioethical policy on communities of color. He has presented papers relating to his research on racial bias in medical treatment at numerous forums, including the Tuskegee Center Conference on Bioethics, Minorities and the Law, the International Conference on Mental Health, and the 2001 Mid-Atlantic People of Color Conference at the Dickinson School of Law.

Bowser was a visiting faculty member at the University of St. Thomas School of Law during the 2003-2004 academic year. Prior to his arrival at the School of Law, Professor Bowser taught torts and advanced topics in health care law and policy at the University of Illinois College of Law.

Courses Taught

Number Title Credits
615 Criminal Law 3
635 Torts 4
798 Topics 0
831 Health Law I 2
950 Supervised Resrch & Writing .5

Areas of Academic Expertise:

Impact of Medical and Bioethical Policy on Communities of Color

From the article "Grand Ideas: Faculty members describe the best ideas from their scholarship" St. Thomas Lawyer Magazine Fall 2011

People of color consistently receive lower-quality health care, even when factors such as insurance status, differences in medical condition and income do not enter the picture. These disparities arise, in part, from institutionalized rules, policies and expectations of health care organizations and individual providers. Typically, civil rights enforcement, like malpractice litigation, focuses on identifying whom or what to blame and, therefore, can redress some particularly egregious forms of race-based disparities. However, racial disparities that are the result of complicated, self-reinforcing and historically rooted decisions, rules and practices are not amenable to the proof format – and blame-laying – required by civil rights laws. A comprehensive systems approach is needed.

Upcoming: A detailed legal and public policy analysis of the Affordable Care Act and the implications for minority health.


Rene Bowser, Medical Civil Rights: The Exclusion of Physicians of Color from Managed Care -- Business or Bias?, 4 Hastings Race & Poverty L.J. 1 (2006).

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Rene Bowser, Race as a Proxy for Drug Response: The Dangers and Challenges of Ethnic Drugs, 53 DePaul L. Rev. 1111 (2004).  

Rene Bowser, Racial Bias in Medical Treatment, 105 Dick. L. Rev. 365 (2001).

Rene Bowser, Racial Profiling in Health Care: An Institutional Analysis of Medical Treatment Disparities, 7 Mich. J. Race & L. 79 (2001).

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Rene Bowser and Lawrence O. Gostin, Managed Care and the Health of a Nation, 72 S. Cal. L. Rev. 1209 (1999).

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Short Pieces

Rene Bowser, Eliminating Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Medical Care, 30 Brief 25 (2001).