Genetic testing is connected with certain ethical principles which cannot be underestimated. They are the following ones:
”¢ Genetic testing requires informed consent of the individual. It is prohibited to do any scientific testing without informed consent. The individual who is going to have genetic testing should know about all the risks and possible results, he should think about his life after this testing, about possible changes in his life.
”¢ Genetic testing should be a free decision of the individual. It is prohibited to pressure an individual to have genetic testing because only an individual himself should make a final decision.
”¢ Privacy is another ethical principle connected with genetic testing. The laboratory should keep the information confidentially. As genetic testing is an emotional experience which can lead to stresses, it’s up to an individual who is having genetic testing to tell about the results of this serious procedure. (Norrgard)
The above mentioned ethical principles should be taken into consideration. Genetic testing is really a very serious procedure which can influence the future life of the individual.
KEY DECISION POINTS
I think that genetic testing is an important issue which requires certain preparations to be made. My key decision points concerning genetic testing in insurance and employment are the following ones:
”¢ Genetic testing should be done in all the organizations of our country because it will allow people to know more about their health and to define some diseases at an early stage.
”¢ People should not be afraid of this procedure because it is connected with their life. In case of getting positive results, the person who has genetic testing will be calm and confident in his health. In case of negative results, the person who has genetic testing will be able to start treatment of this or that disease at an early stage.
”¢ It is not necessary to inform everybody of the results of genetic testing. I am sure that all the ethical principles mentioned in the paper should be followed. Privacy and confidentiality should beon the first place.
The basis for making the decision is connected with genetic discrimination and public opinion. It is known that in the United States there are special laws which prohibit genetic discrimination in employment. In 2000, President Clinton signed the Executive Order which is related to all the employees. The employers are responsible for the costs spent on medical treatment of the employees that is why the employees have no desire to be at risk of being dismissed. (Testing and Selection in Employment, Education and Insurance, p.177)
THE EXAMPLES OF COMPANIES THAT FACES THIS ISSUE
There are two companies that faced the issue concerning genetic testing. The first company is a shoe factory and the second company is an educational institution.
It is interested to note that all the employees of these two organizations agreed to have genetic testing and their decisions were voluntary, but the consequences were unexpected. The shoe factory had the following situation. Two women who have got negative results of genetic testing (they had 68-78% of predisposition to cancer disease)were dismissed. The educational institution had the following situation. Three men have got negative results too, but they were not dismissed. (McConkie-Rossel 27)
SOCIAL, ECONOMIC, LEGAL ISSUES THAT ARISE IN THE MATTER
According to the genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act which was signed by President Bush in 2008, genetic discrimination is prohibited. The shoe factory has violated the law and dismissed two women who were healthy but genetically predisposed to cancer. The chief of the organization was not interested in having such employees at his factory. He broke all the ethical principles concerning genetic discrimination. Social issues which arose after genetic testing of the employees were also rather negative. Some people who learned about the results of testing did not want to communicate with these two women. Economic issues are connected with the fact that these two women have lost their jobs and do not have any opportunity to return to their duties. The second organization, an educational institution, had another situation. Three men who had negative results of genetic testing were not dismissed, but they have to pay more insurance costs. The US law concerning genetic discrimination was not violated. These men continue to have good relations with their colleagues.
”¢ I am sure that our organization should follow all the ethical principles concerning genetic testing, namely privacy, confidentiality, free decision to have genetic testing and informed consent.
”¢ Genetic testing should be done by all the employees in our organization because all the people should know about possible diseases and about their health condition. They should not be afraid of dismissal. They should be treated well by all the members of our organization.
I think that the moral, social and economic impacts of my proposed resolution will not violate the law of the USA and will not diminish human dignity of the employees.
In conclusion, I should say that I hope that my resolution concerning genetic testing will interest you.
Hope to get your feedback soon.