Genetic screening: ethical issues

Report

Published 01/12/1993

Genetic Screening ethical issues

Genetic screening for diseases such as cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anaemia raises important ethical, legal and practical issues for the individual involved, their families and society generally.

Chromosomes
  1. To survey and report on recent and prospective advances in genetic screening and its applications;
  2. To review experience to date of current and potential benefits and difficulties of genetic screening and associated counselling;
  3. To identify, define and discuss the ethical issues affecting both individuals and society which arise, or may arise in future from genetic screening, including such matters as:
    1. the general risk of stigma attaching or being attached to those perceived as genetically disadvantaged;
    2. the handling and holding of information;
    3. consent to being screened;
    4. confidentiality in all its aspects;
    5. the implications for employment and insurance;
    6. the storage and use of genetic information for legal purposes.
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