Monday, November 21, 2005

NYT Article on Prenatal Testing

Yesterday's Week in Review section had this interesting piece. An excerpt:

Because such tests often lead to abortions, people with conditions from mental disability to cystic fibrosis may find their numbers dwindling. As a result, some fear, their lives may become harder just as they are winning the fight for greater inclusion.

"We're trying to make a place for ourselves in society at a time when science is trying to remove at least some of us," said Andrew Imparato, president of the American Association of People With Disabilities, who suffers from bipolar disorder. "For me, it's very scary."

Some bioethicists envision a dystopia where parents who choose to forgo genetic testing are shunned, or their children are denied insurance. Parents and people with disabilities fear they may simply be more lonely. And less money may be devoted to cures and education.

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, for instance, does not endorse prenatal testing, which the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends offering during pregnancy.

"If you can terminate pregnancies with a condition, who is going to put research dollars into it?" said Nancy Press, a professor of medical anthropology at Oregon Health and Science University.

Okay, leave aside the "suffers from." It's a nice piece that surfaces some of the important disability issues here, even if it focuses more on disability services than disability rights. Even Mary Johnson likes it.


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