Healthcare inequality and genetic screening: Will the poor be left behind?

| | August 4, 2017
BN EW edp GR e
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Today in America, if you are poor, you are also more likely to suffer from poor health…

Imagine now, that in the future, being poor also meant you were more likely than others to suffer from major genetic disorders like cystic fibrosis, Tay–Sachs disease, and muscular dystrophy. That is a future, some experts fear, that may not be all that far off.

Most genetic diseases are non-discriminating…But for some parents, prenatal genetic testing has turned what was once fate into choice. There are tests that can screen for hundreds of disorders…That is, if they can pay for it. Without insurance, the costs of a single prenatal test can range from a few hundred dollars up to $2,000.

“Genetic disease has always been our shared vulnerability,” [Laura Hercher, a genetic counselor and professor at Sarah Lawrence College] wrote in Genome. “When one part of society can opt out of risk, will they continue to feel the same obligation to provide support and resources to those who remain vulnerable, especially if at least some of them have deliberately chosen to accept the risk?”

Hercher presents what is really a common vision of dystopia: a future of genetic haves and have-nots in which inequality becomes encoded in our basic biology.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Will Healthcare Inequality Cause Genetic Diseases to Disproportionately Impact the Poor?

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
a a b b a f ac a

Video: Death by COVID: The projected grim toll in historical context

The latest statistics, as of July 10, show COVID-19-related deaths in U.S. are just under 1,000 per day nationally, which is ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
types of oak trees

Infographic: Power of evolution? How oak trees came to dominate North American forests

Over the course of some 56 million years, oaks, which all belong to the genus Quercus, evolved from a single undifferentiated ...
biotechnology worker x

Can GMOs rescue threatened plants and crops?

Some scientists and ecologists argue that humans are in the midst of an "extinction crisis" — the sixth wave of ...
food globe x

Are GMOs necessary to feed the world?

Experts estimate that agricultural production needs to roughly double in the coming decades. How can that be achieved? ...
eating gmo corn on the cob x

Are GMOs safe?

In 2015, 15 scientists and activists issued a statement, "No Scientific consensus on GMO safety," in the journal Environmental Sciences ...
Screen Shot at PM

Charles Benbrook: Agricultural economist and consultant for the organic industry and anti-biotechnology advocacy groups

Independent scientists rip Benbrook's co-authored commentary in New England Journal calling for reassessment of dangers of all GMO crops and herbicides ...
Screen Shot at PM

ETC Group: ‘Extreme’ biotechnology critic campaigns against synthetic biology and other forms of ‘extreme genetic engineering’

The ETC Group is an international environmental non-governmental organization (NGO) based in Canada whose stated purpose is to monitor "the impact of emerging technologies and ...
Share via
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend