Case Studies

  • Niklas JuthEmail author
  • Christian Munthe
Part of the International Library of Ethics, Law, and the New Medicine book series (LIME, volume 51)


So far, we have been considering numerous factors that are relevant to answer the main question of this book: what screening programmes are morally justified? As we have seen, this hinges on so many factors that it may be hard to see the full picture. In this chapter, we would like to bring these factors together in order to assess different screening programmes that are implemented or suggested. We will do this by considering four contested (types of) screening programmes. Some of these are already up and running, while others are in development or, at least, seriously contemplated for the future. The number of screening programs up and running in the world are legio. They become even more numerous if we include suggested ones. A selection has to be made in order to make the discussion manageable. But why have we selected these ones? Primarily because they are of current interest, controversial, and telling regarding the general debate on which screening is defensible. Non-invasive prenatal diagnosis (Section 5.1) is the next frontier of prenatal diagnosis. Screening for fragile X (Section 5.2) is, similarly, an instance of the next frontier for neonatal screening, since it is an instance of screening for a disorder for which there are few medical benefits of screening (which is a clear difference from PKU-screening). In this regard, it is a case that illuminates the wider question of which benefits that are relevant for assessing (neonatal) screening programs.


Down Syndrome Screening Programme Prenatal Diagnosis Mammography Screening Screen Programme 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Karolinska Institutet Dept. Learning, Informatics, Management & Ethics (LIME)StockholmSweden
  2. 2.Dept. Philosophy, Linguistics & Theory of ScienceUniversity of GöteborgGöteborgSweden

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