Segment 3 - The Provider's Role and Costs Associated With Genetic Testing

It is up to physicians to seek education and training on genetics. Panelists agree that it is important for patients to speak with a genetic counselor even if it is over the phone.

It is up to physicians to seek education and training on genetics. Panelists agree that it is important for patients to speak with a genetic counselor even if it is over the phone. “It may be the physicians responsibility to collect the family history in that office appointment and then know when it would be appropriate to refer to a genetic counselor or a geneticist,” said Ms Nagy.

Dr Berger asks the panelists to address the trends associated with costs in genetic testing. “It’s not only the genetic tests, but it’s the downstream costs,” said Ms Matloff referring to unnecessary surgeries, the wrong surveillance, etc. “Cost has 2 elements, unit price and utilization, and I think that with the Supreme Court decision the unit price is going to go down,” said Dr Finley. “Certainly for BRCA, but probably for other genetic tests as well.” Dr Finely said that it is important to address the cost, underutilization of people that should be tested, and the overutilization of the people that should not be tested.