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How much choice? (and who decides?): the challenge of pre-natal testing

Posted Aug 26 2008 4:26pm
Art Caplan poses a succinct question in an article about abortion and genetic testing posted earlier this week in the NY Times : "Abortion rights supporters — who believe that a woman has the right to make decisions about her own body — have had to grapple with the reality that the right to choose may well be used selectively to abort fetuses deemed genetically undesirable. And many are finding that, while they support a woman’s right to have an abortion if she does not want to have a baby, they are less comfortable when abortion is used by women who don’t want to have a particular baby.

'How much choice do you really want to give?' asked Arthur Caplan, chairman of the department of medical ethics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. 'That’s the challenge of prenatal testing to pro-choicers.'

For many women and their partners, the decision to terminate a pregnancy after a prenatal diagnosis of a serious genetic defect can be harrowing, often coming after a painful assessment of their own emotional and financial resources." To read on, click here .

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