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Mother-of-two with life-threatening illness denied access to her biological mother's medical history.


davidcameron

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Mother-of-two with life-threatening illness denied access to her biological mother's medical history.

Dave Kenny: A change in the law could mean difference between life and death - Analysis, Opinion - Independent.ie
An adopted mum-of-two with a life-threatening illness has called on the Government to change the law which denies her access to her mother's medical history.

Nikki Redmond (39), from Dalkey, has portal vein thrombosis and is not entitled, under current legislation, to any information about her birth family. Her doctors have so far been unable to establish the cause of the condition, which can restrict the flow of blood to the liver, and damage internal organs.
She doesn't even know whether or not her biological mother is still alive.

Surely, the information that Nikki needs could be given to her without giving away the biological mother's identity. I'm not denying that the right to privacy is important but, surely, the constitutional right to life is much more important.

The fact that this OP concerns constitutional rights is the reason that I have put it in this forum as opposed to the Health and Social Affairs forum.
 

General Mayhem

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It was very irresponsible of her to have children without knowing her family medical history.

What is the world coming to...

Still, I know my mum so I guess I won't be needing doctors in my lifetime.
 

Kev408

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Pity about the mis-spell in the thread title.
 

bob3367

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There would be no need for her to seek out her birth mother, if the government hadnt decided to destroy all the heel ****************************** data from 1966.

Apparently my factual description of millions of babies is emmmmm bad.

However we will attempt to overcome that by describing it as the test of dna taken from all babies since 1966.
 
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Mercurial

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Dave Kenny: A change in the law could mean difference between life and death - Analysis, Opinion - Independent.ie


She doesn't even know whether or not her biological mother is still alive.

Surely, the information that Nikki needs could be given to her without giving away the biological mother's identity. I'm not denying that the right to privacy is important but, surely, the constitutional right to life is much more important.

The fact that this OP concerns constitutional rights is the reason that I have put it in this forum as opposed to the Health and Social Affairs forum.
Is there a right to, for example, make someone else take a blood test and give you the results if it's necessary to save your life?
 

General Mayhem

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Two drunk people's opinions so far...
How does knowing who her mother is solve this problem? All she needs is her medical history, which could be anonymous.

I'm a sober sandwich.
 

Mercurial

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How does knowing who her mother is solve this problem? All she needs is her medical history, which could be anonymous.

I'm a sober sandwich.
Presumably there's a right to privacy where one's medical history is concerned.

The easiest thing to do in the short term is to have the law be so that if you need the records you can let the person know and then they could consent to you having them.
 

General Mayhem

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Presumably there's a right to privacy where one's medical history is concerned.

The easiest thing to do in the short term is to have the law be so that if you need the records you can let the person know and then they could consent to you having them.
But surely you can have the medical history without a name attached? Are we not making a mountain out of a mo....

Oh.

Yes, Ireland... I forgot.
 

Mercurial

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But surely you can have the medical history without a name attached? Are we not making a mountain out of a mo....

Oh.

Yes, Ireland... I forgot.
I don't know what the law is in this area, but I imagine there are data protection issues which would have to be dealt with. The law would need to specify under what circumstances a person's medical records can be accessed without their consent, even if they are not identifiable.
 

davidcameron

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Is there a right to, for example, make someone else take a blood test and give you the results if it's necessary to save your life?
An invasive procedure on the biological mother would not be necessary for Nikki Redmond to have the information that she needs.
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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There would be no need for her to seek out her birth mother, if the government hadnt decided to destroy all the heel ****************************** data from 1966.

Apparently my factual description of millions of babies is emmmmm bad.

However we will attempt to overcome that by describing it as the test of dna taken from all babies since 1966.
Speaking of which, this is most definitely worth a read

HSE.ie - Health Service Executive Website - Information on Stored Newborn Screening Cards


For Babies born from 1984 - 2002: If you prefer that the screening card is returned to you and not disposed of in 2013, you can request the card to be returned. The request must come from the parent or guardian of the baby who was screened, or from the person screened if they are now aged over 18 years, or by their next-of-kin if they are deceased.
 
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I think that are isues outside th simple health issues here.

What if the natural mother has moved on had a family, What if her new family are unaware of their half-sister?
How do you get her permission without running the risk that her privacy could be breached.

I'm thinking of the logistics: sending a letter runs th risk that it will b opened by new hubby.

In addition, even a heavily redacted report might contain enough information to hint at the locality of the patient. A report would also crry details of number of pregnancies.

Even if restricted purely to genetic disorders that might allow a route to the mother via support groups for their sared ailment etc;

I seee problems, but I'm ure they could be catered for.

Perhaps all adopted people should have access to some service whereby their mothers can advise of any genetic issues which could b of future concern.

ETA: Even that could lead to identification of the mother if the ailment is sufficiently rare.
 

Mercurial

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An invasive procedure on the biological mother would not be necessary for Nikki Redmond to have the information that she needs.
Sure, and it looks like that might serve as the basis for a legal distinction.

I suspect the reason this hasn't been addressed is because the number of potential cases are so small, and you would need to invest resources in drawing up some proper laws.

Presumably what they ought to do is to see what is best practice in other countries with similar laws and modify ours accordingly, although even then that would probably cost a bit.
 

davidcameron

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Sure, and it looks like that might serve as the basis for a legal distinction.

I suspect the reason this hasn't been addressed is because the number of potential cases are so small, and you would need to invest resources in drawing up some proper laws.

Presumably what they ought to do is to see what is best practice in other countries with similar laws and modify ours accordingly, although even then that would probably cost a bit.
The Government already employees people to draw-up legislation. I don't see what extra cost would be associated with creating legislation for this matter.
 

crossman

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There would be no need for her to seek out her birth mother, if the government hadnt decided to destroy all the heel ****************************** data from 1966.
This is an example of the Data Protection people being far too doctrinaire. Someone should be able to bring common sense rulings to bear on issues like this i.e. data protection should be secondary to the common good provided reasonable safeguards on privacy are in place.
 

davidcameron

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This is an example of the Data Protection people being far too doctrinaire. Someone should be able to bring common sense rulings to bear on issues like this i.e. data protection should be secondary to the common good provided reasonable safeguards on privacy are in place.
I believe that the Supreme Court would, where the rights to life and privacy clash, put the right to life first. For example, the courts have ruled in the cases of children whose parents are Jehovah's Witnesses that the children's right to life is more important than their parents' beliefs.
 

crossman

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I believe that the Supreme Court would, where the rights to life and privacy clash, put the right to life first. For example, the courts have ruled in the cases of children whose parents are Jehovah's Witnesses that the children's right to life is more important than their parents' beliefs.
I agree but that is in a particular case. I believe all these records should be kept.
 
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