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    A Report from Denmark: Anonymity and informed consent in artificial procreation

    Lebech, Mette (1997) A Report from Denmark: Anonymity and informed consent in artificial procreation. Bioethics, 11 (3&4). pp. 336-340. ISSN 0269-9702

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    The practice of informed consent in biomedicine is so widely spread that it must be considered the most important principle within bioethics, and the most universally appealed to within recent legislation. There seems to be a consensus as to its value in research on autonomous persons, but also a problem concerning its application when dealing with people having a serious mental, social or even physical disability. Within the field of artificial procreation there are even more problems. Informed written consent is often demanded from anonymous donors of gametes in order to ensure their consent to the legal and moral consequences of their anonymity. The child resulting from the artificial procreation, on the contrary, cannot consent to, nor be informed before being conceived, of the secrecy laid on the identity of its genetic parents. Some countries resolve this problem by allowing the children, when they reach their majority, to obtain some information pertaining to the health or the identity of their genetic parents. This presents ethical problems. It can be argued that the anonymity of the parents chiefly affects the children, so that an agreement on this point among parents, doctors and others must be regarded as invalid. The paper will argue that a law ensuring the complete anonymity of the parents is disregarding the informed consent and the interests of the children resulting from artificial procreation, and is thus doing more damage to society than good.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: A Report from Denmark; Anonymity; informed consent; artificial procreation;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts & Humanities > Philosophy
    Item ID: 11931
    Depositing User: Mette Lebech
    Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2019 12:14
    Journal or Publication Title: Bioethics
    Publisher: Blackwell Publishers Ltd.
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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