Mapping the Icelandic Genome

Legislation in Iceland

During the 122nd session of the Icelandic Parliament, in March 1998, the
Icelandic Government issued a bill on the creation and operation of a centralized medical database. This bill sprang from the ideas of Kári Stefánsson, CEO of deCode Genetics. Ideas on such a database were suggested earlier, in 1975-76, but were not materialized due to lack of funding and information technology. The bill was subjected to intensive discussions in Parliament and the mass media and was not passed. A working group appointed by the Ministry of Health and Social Security to revise the bill in the light of these discussions and a new bill was issued to Parliament during its 123rd session, in October 1998. After a few weeks of deliberations in both its Committee on Health and in its general session, Parliament passed the bill, on 17 December 1998; 37 MPs voted for it, 20 against, and 6 were not present. In accordance with the bill, a Governing Committee has bee appointed(25 February) to oversee the establishment and running of the database. On 23 March 1999, 600 people had exercised that right.

Copyright (C) 1999 by the Library, University of California, Berkeley. All rights reserved.
Last update 4/23/99.