Protecting the Vulnerable: Genetic Testing and Screening for Parentage, Immigration, and Aboriginality

  • Astrid H. Gesche
Part of the International Library of Ethics, Law, and the New Medicine book series (LIME, volume 30)

As healthcare professions, law enforcement agencies, governments, employers, insurance companies, and others rush to utilize genetic information about individuals with whom they interact or have relationships, conflict may arise between different stakeholders. In such circumstances, it may be the function of ethics to balance competing interests and activities, explore alternatives and options, and protect the vulnerable from harm. Ethics may explore and advise on issues of the moral life, but sometimes it needs the backup of constructive policy developments and the investigative, protective, and guiding forces of the law to achieve a more mutually beneficial outcome. This chapter on DNA kinship testing is an example of such merging of forces, namely ethics, policy, and law to protect the vulnerable. It portrays the effects of unethical behaviour on three different stakeholders and makes some recommendations on how to re-establish and protect the moral life.

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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Astrid H. Gesche
    • 1
  1. 1.Human SciencesQueensland University of TechnologyAustralia

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