Newborn screening cards

A legal quagmire

Diana Bowman, David M. Studdert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

• Newborn screening (NBS) programs are a well established and cost-effective method for early identification of genetic disorders. However, a raft of legal questions surrounds the collection, storage, ownership and secondary use of NBS cards. • The absence of clear legal rules governing NBS programs in Australia means that there are few straightforward answers to these questions. A series of controversial incidents have exposed this uncertainty in Australia, and remarkably similar controversies have occurred in the United States and European Union. • We review the situation, using Victoria as a case study. We also make the case for a dedicated regulatory regime for NBS programs, arguing that the lack of such a regime threatens public trust and the robust operation of NBS programs in Australia. • New rules would likely introduce stricter requirements for informed consent at the point of blood collection than has been the norm to date. However, the scope for use of cards in research could expand rather than contract, and it may be possible to reduce the risk that vast card archives will need to be destroyed in response to future public outcries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-322
Number of pages4
JournalMedical Journal of Australia
Volume194
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 21 2011
Externally publishedYes

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Newborn Infant
Inborn Genetic Diseases
Victoria
Ownership
European Union
Contracts
Informed Consent
Uncertainty
Costs and Cost Analysis
Research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Newborn screening cards : A legal quagmire. / Bowman, Diana; Studdert, David M.

In: Medical Journal of Australia, Vol. 194, No. 6, 21.03.2011, p. 319-322.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Bowman, D & Studdert, DM 2011, 'Newborn screening cards: A legal quagmire', Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 194, no. 6, pp. 319-322.
Bowman, Diana ; Studdert, David M. / Newborn screening cards : A legal quagmire. In: Medical Journal of Australia. 2011 ; Vol. 194, No. 6. pp. 319-322.
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