The use of genetic tests can lead to genetic discrimination, discrimination based solely on the nature of an individual's genotype. Instances of the discriminatory uses of genetic tests by employers and insurance companies have already been reported. The recently enacted Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), together with other federal and state laws, can be used to combat some forms of this discrimination. In this article we define and characterize genetic discrimination, discuss the applicability of the various relevant federal and state laws, including the ADA, in the areas of employment and insurance discrimination, explore the limitations of these laws, and, finally, suggest some means of overcoming these limitations. (+info)
Computerized patient information under the Privacy Act: a regulatory effectiveness analysis.
Regulatory Effectiveness Analysis is a new technique for measuring compliance with a technological regulatory system. By examining the public policies, legal structures and technical tools involved in the regulatory system, it is possible to discover discontinuities which may result in non compliance with the regulatory system. This technique can be used to analyze the Veterans Health Administration's (VHA) actions under the Privacy Act. (+info)
Professional and hospital discrimination and the US Court of Appeals Fourth Circuit 1956-1967.
A series of court cases litigated by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Legal Defense and Education Fund between 1956 and 1967 laid the foundation for elimination of overt discrimination in hospitals and professional associations. The landmark case, Simkins v Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital (1963), challenged the use of public funds to expand segregated hospital care. The second case, Cypress v Newport News Hospital Association (1967), reaffirmed the federal government's application of Medicare certification guidelines to force hospitals to open up patient admissions, education programs, and staff privileges to all citizens and physicians. Pursuit of a legal strategy against racist policies was an essential element in a national campaign to eliminate discrimination in health care delivery in the United States. (+info)
Perspectives on affirmative action in academic dental institutions: the U.S. Supreme Court rulings in the University of Michigan cases.
In June 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of using race as a factor in higher education admissions decisions. This article considers the impact of the Supreme Court decisions on admissions procedures at selected academic dental institutions (ADI) and their parent institutions. We interviewed fifty-eight leaders considered to be individual stakeholders at seven ADI and their related parent institutions, state dental associations, and state legislatures using a common set of questions about the Supreme Court decisions. Educators from the ADI and their parent institutions were consistent in their responses that the rulings upheld affirmative action as necessary to achieve diversity. State organized dentistry officials did not appear to be as aware as others of the rulings, whereas legislators were mixed in their responses. Except for the University of Michigan undergraduate admissions procedures, it remains to be seen what the impact will be for other higher education institutions and for academic dental institutions. Although the rulings have provided guidelines for achieving diversity using race/ ethnicity as one of several factors, the rulings will possibly be challenged, thus requiring vigilance on the part of parent institutions and their ADI to ensure compliance with the spirit of the rulings and to avoid attack from opponents of affirmative action. (+info)
Why can't I visit? The ethics of visitation restrictions - lessons learned from SARS.
Patients want, need and expect that their relatives will be able to visit them during inpatient admissions or accompany them during ambulatory visits. The sudden outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), or a similar contagious pathogen, will restrict the number of people entering the hospital. The ethical values that underlie visitor restrictions are discussed here. (+info)
Aaron O. Wells, MD and the Medical Committee for Human Rights: reflections on a life of conscience.
The southern civil rights movement compelled Dr. Aaron Wells and other doctors to find ways to use their skills in support of that movement. Through the Medical Committee for Human Rights (MCHR), healthcare workers provided a medical presence for civil rights protesters in the south during the 1960s. Formed at a time when racial segregation in professional medical associations, hospitals, and medical education was common, the MCHR also highlighted race-based inequities in American medicine. Dr. Wells, a man who lives a life of activism, was the first national president of the MCHR. During the summer of 2002, nearly 40 years after the founding of MCHR, Wells was interviewed about his experiences. Those reminiscences are the basis of this article. (+info)
Fifty years after Brown vs. Board of Education de facto segregation in medical societies is alive and well.
Although 50 years have post since the historic Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court decision, segregation remains in most medical/specialty societies. (+info)
Racial and ethnic health disparities and the unfinished civil rights agenda.
Civil rights-era efforts to end disparities in health care in federally financed health programs faced three successively more difficult challenges: (1) ending Jim Crow practices, (2) eliminating more subtle forms of segregation, and (3) assuring nondiscriminatory treatment in integrated settings. Federal efforts peaked with the implementation of the Medicare program. Visible symbols of Jim Crow disappeared, and most crude disparities in access were eliminated. The unfinished parts of the civil rights-era agenda, the persistence of more subtle forms of segregation, and the failure to assure nondiscriminatory treatment pose major challenges to current efforts to eliminate health care disparities. (+info)