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April 12, 1995

Genetic Testing for Children and Adolescents

Author Affiliations

Genetics Services Elmhurst, Ill

JAMA. 1995;273(14):1089. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03520380025019

To the Editor.  —We applaud the contribution of Dr Wertz and colleagues1 for their thought-provoking discussion of the issues involved in genetic testing of children and adolescents. We are impressed by the constructive approach to articulating "categories, based on utility," and the distribution of responsibilities among parents, children, and professionals.The article is useful in promoting discussion of these important and growing concerns. It appeared 3 days before a long-planned, all-day meeting of our group (Subcommittee on Ethical and Legal Issues of the Great Lakes Regional Genetics Group) to discuss the same subject in hope of drafting a position statement. We propose some points to help advance the discussion.There is need for more complete exploration of the following: (1) parents' fundamental rights and duties of decision making with respect to genetic testing of their minor children; (2) circumstances and concerns prompting requests for genetic testing of minors (usually

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