Harnessing the Human Genome Through Legislative Constraint

in European Journal of Health Law
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Abstract

The awesome predictive power of genetic medicine promises great advancements in not only the treatment of identifiable conditions but the prevention of their pathological manifestations. At the same time, the release and dissemination of this genetic or medical information poses a distinct risk of loss of privacy and stigmatization to carriers of genetic disorders. In order to safeguard the individual right of autonomy, privacy, confidentiality and informed consent—yet accommodate the legitimate interests of employers and insurers to obtain medical information relevant to their professional needs and economic responsibilities—a balance must be struck legislatively at the federal and state levels of government.

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