Genetic Non-Discrimination Act and Newborn Screening Laws Pass Congress
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The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation praised the passage of two important pieces of legislation. One law protects those with CF from discrimination based on their genetic disease. The other new bill helps diagnose cystic fibrosis at the earliest stages.

Today Congress passed the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). Originally proposed more than ten years ago, GINA helps to protect people with cystic fibrosis from discrimination by insurance companies or employers. The law also protects those who carry the defective CF gene, but do not have symptoms of the disease.

The new law provides legal safeguards for people who have been denied health coverage or employment because of genetic information, and makes the act of such discrimination illegal. This law will become increasingly important as genetic testing becomes more widespread. President Bush is expected signed the bill in the near future.

President Bush signed the Newborn Screening Saves Lives Act into law April 24. The bill provides additional resources for new and existing newborn screening programs through 2012. Newborn screening allows cystic fibrosis to be diagnosed early, which gives every newborn a better chance for better health and a longer life.

The Foundation applauds both Congress and President Bush for their actions on these important initiatives.

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