ERIC Number: EJ883262
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 25
Can There Be Such a Thing as a "Wrongful Birth"?
Disability & Society, v20 n1 p81-93 Jan 2005
With the growing application of modern genetic technology to everyday healthcare provision, concern over its moral defence is increasing. This paper discusses pre-natal genetic testing, currently the healthcare situation in which the technology is most frequently applied. In doing this it addresses the justification for the resulting marked increase in legal cases compensating those thought to have suffered a wrongful birth, as well as the fears surrounding these developments that, to some, resonate of the dangerous mind-set of the 19th and early 20th century, which led to the atrocities defended under the name "eugenics". The discussion is presented in terms of Beauchamp and Childress' (1994) ethical principles for healthcare: autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence and justice. The conclusion emphasises the role of context, both societal and individual in shaping the outcome of the difficult decisions involved in undertaking pre-natal genetic testing.
Descriptors: Screening Tests, Testing, Genetic Disorders, Disabilities, Ethics, Pregnancy, Moral Values, Court Litigation, Context Effect, Personal Autonomy, History, Civil Rights, Social Justice
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A