The Genome Project Essay example

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The Genome Project


"To make a distinction in favor of or against a person on the basis of the group or class (or now, genes?) to which the person belongs, rather than according to merit." With technology ever advancing, what will come out of knowing all about one's genetic make-up and potential future? Health insurance will most likely always be increasing. With Employers often paying the majority of an employee's insurance premium, how will employment be affected by health insurance discrimination? These questions and others are on the minds of people keeping up with the Human Genome Project and discrimination laws. First, though, we have to find out what current law allows for, then the possibilities of what can happen, and lastly
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Moreover, little debate exists over the fact that the ADA covers individuals who have a prior record of a genetically related disability, for example, someone who has recovered from cancer. And yet, courts have not yet determined whether the ADA should be understood to restrict discrimination on the basis of a diagnosed, potential, genetic condition or trait that has not developed. The waters will however probably be tested within the courts in the next six years as the Human Genome Project develops fully.
Without current narrow definitions of genetic discrimination an employer can possible get away with a lot. Lets say a health insurance company states that persons with certain genetic disorders can be either dropped or have an extraordinarily large premium. Then they go on to say that any company that has group health insurance through them will have a large increase in the overall premium if any of the individuals (employees) in the group has one of these genetic defects. The employer would be inclined to discriminate against these persons to keep from paying the extra premium. Also there is the possibility of health insurance being eliminated altogether. If…

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