Who are Genetic Counselors?
- Genetic Counselors are Master’s degree trained healthcare providers who specialize in understanding how our genes contribute to the development of certain diseases. Counselors at the West Cancer Center are licensed in the state of Tennessee and are board-certified/board-eligible through the American Board of Genetic Counseling. By assessing your personal and family history of cancer, a Genetic Counselor can explore possible genetic conditions running in your family and order genetic testing as indicated. Genetic Counselors are also trained to provide short-term counseling and are committed to exploring the psychological aspects of cancer, as well as the physical.
Will health insurance cover Genetic Counseling and Genetic Testing?
- Most insurance companies DO cover genetic counseling.
- The amount of coverage for genetic testing varies by specific plan. Genetic testing may be covered if it is recommended by a genetic counselor or other health care professional, but each insurance company has different policies and criteria for coverage. Several laboratories also offer financial assistance and self-pay options for those with limited or no insurance coverage. A genetic counselor can help you navigate this complicated process to determine your out-of-pocket cost.
What should I do before a genetic counseling session?
- To truly make the most of your genetic counseling session, try to obtain information about your family’s health information.
- In the oncology setting, finding out what types of cancer your relatives may have and their approximate ages when diagnosed can be very helpful in determining your own risk for cancer as well as the most appropriate cancer screening.
Who should see a Genetic Counselor?
- An individual with metastatic prostate cancer
- A woman with metastatic breast cancer