The cost of genetic testing varies, and this is due to many factors. In the U.S., the cost depends on the genetic test being performed, the lab that performs the test, and the contracts they have with your insurance company and/or the hospital or clinic that orders the genetic test. Many labs are committed to making the genetic testing process as simple and cost-effective as possible. Some labs offer a discounted price when a patient pays by cash. There are also financial hardship programs available for patients who do not have insurance, or may have high out-of-pocket deductibles. In certain countries, genetic testing through the medical system may be included in your country's overall health insurance program. It is important to discuss this with the healthcare provider ordering genetic testing for you, to determine how your genetic test will be billed and answer any questions or concerns you have about the process.
Genetic discrimination is a concern for some people considering genetic testing. In the U.S., the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) was passed in 2008 to protect people from health insurance and employment discrimination. GINA is a U.S. law that states you cannot be denied a job or denied health insurance because of your genetic information. Unfortunately, this law does not apply to all individuals and does not apply to some types of insurance, like life insurance. Your state or area may have additional, more complete laws in this area. Click here to learn more about how GINA can protect you.