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State House Committee Passes Genetic Testing Bill

February 24, 1998
By: Tristin Yeager
State Capital Bureau

A bill that would prevent your insurance company from using your genetic information against you is one step closer to the State House floor. Tristin Yeager reports from the state capitol.

The House Insurance Committee passed a bill that would make it illegal for an insurance company to request, require or consider genetic information in providing health coverage.

Sponsor of the bill, St. Louis Representative Patrick Dougherty:

Actuality:dough03.wave
ST: :14.154
PC: "...that the genetic tests can result in."
Contents: Dougherty says the fear of having an insurance policy cancelled might keep people from benefitting from the positive effects of genetic testing.

If passed, the bill would also require insurance companies to pay claims to domestic abuse victims. The measure now goes to the Full House for debate.


The House Insurance Committee passed a bill that would prevent insurance companies from using your genetic information to affect your coverage. Tristin Yeager reports from the state capitol.

St. Louis Representative Patrick Dougherty, the bill sponsor, says the bill will help prevent the genetic discrimination of Missouri citizens.

Actuality: dough04.wav
RunTime: :15.028
OutCue: "...all of us could be subject to discrimination."
Contents: Dougherty says if insurance companies are allowed to consider genetic testing information for health care coverage, everyone could be subject to discrimination.

House Insurance Committee Chairman Ron Auer says he thinks most people will support the version passed by the committee.


The State House Insurance Committee has addressed concerns that genetic testing would affect health insurance coverage. Tristin Yeager reports from the state capitol.

The committee passed a bill that would prevent insurance companies from considering genetic information in providing health coverage.

St. Louis County Representative Jim Murphy voted against the bill in committee, but says he did so because the bill is not strong enough.

Actuality: murphy1.wav
RunTime: :15.826
OutCue: "...these huge businesses, these insurance companies."
Contents: Murphy says he doesn't think the bill is strong enough in protecting the average person and that without legislation, the individual is left at great risk.

Murphy says he never votes for a bill unless he agrees with all of it.