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2008 National DNA Day Online Chatroom Transcript

This is just one question from an archive of the National DNA Day Moderated Chat held in April 2008. The NHGRI Director and many genomics experts from across NHGRI took questions from students, teachers and the general public on topics ranging from basic genomic research, to the genetic basis of disease, to ethical questions about genetic privacy.

Yesterday the senate passed a bill prohibiting Insurence and businesses from discriminating against people with genetic diseases so how do you think this will benefit society? (Andrew)
     Sharon Terry, M.A.: Runs the Genetic Alliance, a coalition of over 600 disease specific advocacy organizations working to increase capacity in advocacy organizations and to leverage the voices of the millions of individuals and families affected by genetic conditions. I worked on getting that bill passed for the last 13 years! I worked hard on it, along with thousands of other people, because I believe that the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) paves the way for the responsible use of genetic information while protecting against discrimination with respect to health insurance and employment.

People will feel less afraid to be tests, and to participate in clinical trials, and so personal health and our understanding of health and disease will be advanced. I am so thrilled by this and look forward to the bill becoming law!
Rock Canyon High School in CO (12th grade student)

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