Reproductive medicine: Preimplantation diagnosis requires stricter limits

It is the view of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches that the amendment of the law on reproductive medicine, planned for a vote on June 5, would go too far. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) requires stricter limits than is planned. The FSPC therefore supports the referendum against the law.

The amendment of the law would not only allow for pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) in Switzerland, but would indeed make it into one of Europe’s most liberal countries in that regard. The Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches regrets that the proposed law does not limit the medical method more strictly.

The FSPC supports three important limitations that are not included in the proposal. First of all, PGD should only be permitted in clearly defined exceptional situations such as serious hereditary illness. Secondly, artificially fertilized embryos should only be used for pregnancies and not for research. And third, parents are in need of competent psychological and ethical advisement, as the selection of an embryo is not a mere medical decision but involves making an informed choice for a child.

The FSPC is ultimately concerned with our view of humanity, the basis for any choices that could be made in terms of reproductive medicine. In a biblical, Christian understanding of humankind, people have more to offer through their diversity and richness than any societal norms of quality or success. PGD constitutes a step towards the genetic selection of children in the future. We need to take into account that a greater freedom to make such choices also entails a higher level of responsibility.

The amendment on reproductive medicine thus leads to numerous questions that go beyond the realm of medicine alone. The FSPC has published a brochure in French (10 questions – 10 réponses) and German on the issue (10 Fragen – 10 Antworten) download