p. 396 in Bioethics in Asia

Editors: Norio Fujiki and Darryl R. J. Macer, Ph.D.
Eubios Ethics Institute

Copyright 2000, Eubios Ethics Institute All commercial rights reserved. This publication may be reproduced for limited educational or academic use, however please enquire with the author.

F13. The Ethical Guidelines of the gPosition Paperh of the Society of Human Genetics in Germany

Prof. Hiedemarie Neizel.

Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany

In Germany, the Human Genome Project has greatly increased the publicfs fear about eugenics and about altering human nature. The bioethical debate in Germany has to be seen in the context of the trauma inflicted by National Socialism. On the basis of grace hygieneh, involuntary sterilization was the first step, to be followed by involuntary euthanasia of handicapped persons. The gknow howh acquired during these activities was used in the gFinal Solutionh resulting in the systematic killing of more than 6million people. Remembering the holocaust, many German oppose the new technical developments in genetics.

Major lessons form the Nazi era are the fundamental ethical basis of medicine, and the importance of an informed, concerned, and engaged public and profession. In order to allay the publicfs fear about genetics and to provide guidelines for professional conduct, the first so-called define the current ethical standpoint regarding genetic testing, human autonomy, confidentiality, non-directive counseling, freedom of choice, and the right to know or not know.


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