Consumer Reports Identifies ‘Potential Pitfalls’ of Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Tests

At-home genetic test kits face scrutiny for providing information that may provide consumers with an incomplete picture of their genetic health risks and ancestry Genetic testing for disease risk and heritage are hugely popular. But though clinical laboratory and pathology professionals understand the difference between a doctor-ordered genetic health risk (GHR) test and a direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic test, the typical genetic test customer may not. And misunderstanding the results of a...

Consumer Reports Ranks Smaller and Non-Teaching Hospitals Highest in Infection Prevention

Clinical laboratory professionals and pathologists are part of multi-disciplinary efforts to curb healthcare-associated infections One interesting fact about a national list of hospitals that rank highest in infection prevention is that they are mostly smaller and non-teaching hospitals. This was one finding from a recent survey conducted by Consumer Reports. The survey tracked MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), Clostridium difficile (C. diff) and other common bacteria that...

“Choosing Wisely” Program Wants to Encourage Better Utilization of Clinical Pathology Laboratory Tests

For years, pathologists and physicians have spoken out about the overuse of medical laboratory tests and other diagnostic procedures. Now an interesting alliance of a medical specialty association and Consumers Reports has come together with a highly-publicized plan designed to reduce unnecessary or inappropriate testing by encouraging physicians to more deeply involve patients in the process.

British Health Authorities Criticize Medical Laboratory Tests for Consumers

It’s not just in the United States that Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) medical laboratory tests are coming under criticism, as reported in recent weeks by Dark Daily. Two prominent organizations in the United Kingdom (UK) have issued reports with serious criticisms of what are known as “Do-It-Yourself” (DIY) clinical laboratory tests in that country. Researchers identified the several ways that DIY test in the UK, often bought over-the-counter in pharmacies, could mislead or harm consumers. In our...

Medical Laboratory Tests for Consumers Under Investigation on Two Continents

Government agencies in both the United States and the United Kingdom look at direct-to-consumer (DTC) tests Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) medical tests are under attack by multiple federal agencies here in the United States, even as authorities in the United Kingdom (UK) similarly question the potential of these genetic tests and molecular diagnostic assays to harm and/or mislead consumers. Of course, many pathologists and clinical laboratory managers here in the United States know that multiple...
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