African Americans and Genetic Research, Risk Versus Benefit: Implications for the Profession of Social Work
Jones, Norma Gray
Harris, Jesse J
Social work in public health 2011; 26(4): 380-91
The Human Genome Project was a 13-year study with great potential for improving the health of the current generation and extending the life of future generations. Genetic research, though showing potential for good, may also result in societal problems. This article considers the implications of future genetic research for African Americans and other vulnerable groups with a retrospective view of medical research and the African Americans' experience. In light of the growing health disparity between Whites and Blacks, this article argues for minority participation in clinical trials and other studies. It addresses the role of social workers as genetic counselors and encourages, especially social workers of color, involvement in the field of genetics as advocates, teachers, and as members of research teams.
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