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Confusion and controversy surround efforts to re-evaluate and, thus, redefine the extent to which governmental intrusion should be allowed in the doctor-patient relationship vis-a-vis the treatment or non treatment of genetically handicapped, at risk infants. The purpose of this article is to present a succinct comparative analysis of the medical-legal posture in Britain and the United States and from this analysis to develop a construct to aid the physician and the family in making decisions concerning the administration or the withholding of treatment for genetically defective newborns.



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