NHS Building DNA Electronic Database in the UK
Genetic Testing of Citizens Is a Backdoor into Total Population Surveillance by Governments and Companies
By Helen Wallace of GeneWatch UK
Synopsis: Why is Britain's Health Service (the NHS), which is legendarily short of money, nevertheless spending major sums to collect and store DNA, and build electronic health databases? The official answer is that these will benefit population health and reduce costs in the long term. Yet this official explanation has negligible scientific support.
Genetic inheritance plays only an occasional role in health outcomes and is largely irrelevant to the commonest diseases. Nor, when they exist, are there benefits in separating populations into high and low genetic risk groups.
So, are Britain's gene database projects attributable to common misunderstandings about the power of genetics? Or are they stealthy attempts to partner with pharmaceutical giants and genomics companies? Or even attempts to complement surveillance information gained in other ways?