A committee of the U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation last month that would ban employers from collecting genetic information from employees and applicants and prohibit the use of genetic tests when making employment decisions.
The bill, H.R. 493, also would block health insurers from denying coverage or charging higher premiums based on a person’s genetic predisposition to certain diseases. Last year, the Senate passed similar legislation by 98-0. President Bush said he’d support the bill.
Most states already have acted on the issue: So far, 34 ban genetic discrimination in employment and 41 ban it in the health insurance market. (To check on your state’s law, visit www.ncsl.org/programs/health/genetics/ndiscrim.htm.)