I was originally going to type a post about genetics within the special education field. Then I ran across this article, Couple sues over failed Down Syndrome diagnosis and was going to write about wrongful birth lawsuits.
However, there has been so much in the news today about DTC gene tests which I couldn’t ignore. DTC companies have the potential to make a positive impact on the public by improving accessibility to genetic services. Unfortunately, those services are currently being questioned.
Today, the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing, “Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Testing and the Consequences to the Public Health).” For more opening statements and testimonies go here.
What caught my attention was the federal ‘sting’ where undercover investigators either ordered kits or called companies with questions. Check out the brief video below with snippets of recorded phone conversations between DTC companies and undercover investigators.
The FDA also sent out letters to 14 companies regarding genetic tests they provide. Click here for a list of those companies and letters.
The U.S. GAO (Government Accountability Office) has released a summary and full report “Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Tests: Misleading Test Results Are Further Complicated by Deceptive Marketing and Other Questionable Practices.” Go here to read this report.