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New York lawsuit seeks release of newborns' HIV test results

, : New York lawsuit seeks release of newborns' HIV test results. Aids Policy & Law 10(7): 5-5

The Association to Benefit Children (ABC), a New York advocacy group, has sued to force the state to inform mothers of the HIV test results of their newborn infants. The suit, filed in March, 1995, in the Supreme Court for New York County, asked the court to declare unconstitutional the state's policy of testing newborns without disclosing the test results to their mothers. Since 1987, the New York Health Department has been routinely testing all newborns for evidence of HIV antibodies. However, results are not divulged because the testing is intended to assess the extent of HIV infection in a given area or demographic group. The suit alleged that the blind HIV testing procedure denies babies their right to equal protection under the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and Article 1, Section 11 of the state constitution. According to the suit, early diagnosis is essential as HIV infection generally develops faster in infants than in adults. The suit also sought testing, counseling and treatment of all at-risk children in the foster care system.


PMID: 11362392

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