Free Pharmacogenomics Test for Newborns Could Open Door to Wider Acceptance of Genomic Testing in Ways that Benefit Medical Laboratories
A hospital in Virginia now offers a genetic service to new parents that could impact clinical pathology laboratories if it develops into a trend
Here’s a first in the rapidly-developing field of pharmacogenomics testing. A hospital in Virginia announced that it would offer a free pharmacogenomics test to newborns. This is a development that will catch the attention of clinical pathologists and medical laboratory professionals at other hospitals across the country.
Inova Women’s Services at the Inova Woman’s Hospital on the Inova Fairfax Medical Campus in Falls Church, VA, has begun offering free MediMap tests to newborns. MediMap is a pharmacogenomics (PGx) test that looks for variations in seven genes that could indicate a child might process certain drugs differently than the majority of the population.
The program is an example of a well-known and often-used marketing tactic: “Buy X and get Y free!” Given the choice between a new free diaper bag and a free, painless test that, as Inova’s website states, “personalizes prescriptions to more effectively treat and manage illnesses in the future,” what new mother would choose the diaper bag? (more…)