Why Genetic Testing?
Genetic testing is gaining popularity in the community at large. Extensive research has been done on different types of genetic testing to identify what is most applicable for cancer care based on the cancer type. Genetic testing may help address the underlying cause for your cancer diagnosis, to help target chemotherapy drugs, to extend appropriate screening for other organs that might be at-risk for a second cancer and to help convey information to family members about their own cancer-risks. How would you know if genetic testing is appropriate for you? Tennessee Oncology offers genetic counseling services to help address some of your questions.
What is a Genetic Counselor?
Genetic Counselors are trained professionals in medical genetics and counseling, and form a part of your healthcare team, to guide and support patients that seek information about inherited cancers. They will gather your family history of cancer and interpret genetic risks, before or after you have had genetic testing. They have expertise in Genetics and can guide you on whether genetic testing might be right for you and your family.
What can I expect from a genetic counseling session?
You should anticipate an informative counseling appointment that often lasts 30 minutes to an hour. Your genetic counselor will
- Explore your family history
- Discuss the reason for the referral
- Help you understand how genetic testing might impact your treatment and health care
- Provide guidance to help you decide whether testing is something you would like to pursue
- Help understand your result and how to follow through with next steps with your doctor
Learn more about your genetic counseling appointment by watching this video that explains some aspects of the visit. Click on the link below
Does my insurance cover my genetic counseling appointment?
At Tennessee Oncology, your first appointment with a genetic counselor for family history and risk assessment can be conducted over the phone or as a video call at the convenience of your home. When seen in clinic or as a telemedicine visit, most health insurances typically pay for genetic counseling. We encourage you to check with your insurance company if this is a covered service. If you decide to proceed with genetic testing, the counselor will help guide you on whether you need the genetic test, and whether you might meet insurance criteria for the genetic test. Health insurances typically pay for genetic testing when it is recommended by your doctor.
How do I go about setting up a genetic counseling appointment?
To get started, please click on this link to complete your family history form. Once completed our office will call you to schedule your consultation with a genetic counselor.
Have more questions?
Please call your clinic and ask to speak to the genetic counselor.