Are genetic counsellors medical doctors?
No, genetic counsellors are allied health professionals with postgraduate qualifications in human clinical genetics and counselling and communication skills. Although genetic counsellors are not medically trained, they can order genetic tests and explain results for many varying conditions. Some cases may be more appropriate for a clinical geneticist or other type of medical specialist and this will be explained before an appointment is arranged.
What is genetic counselling?
Genetic counselling is an appointment or appointments providing genetic assessment, information and advice given by a genetic counsellor / genomic consultant or other genetic healthcare professional regarding one’s health or wellbeing.
What is genetic testing?
Genetic testing is the testing of genetic material, usually from a blood or saliva sample used with the aim of either diagnosing an illness or condition or to calculate someone’s chance of carrying or being at risk of developing a genetic condition.
How do I know if I need genetic testing?
During your genetic assessment consultation, the genomic consultant will discuss the varying factors influencing the appropriateness of genetic testing. Some people may choose against testing after being informed that there would be a low chance of identifying a genetic change (mutation) on a genetic test. If a genetic test is offered, there is no obligation to proceed with the test.
How will I understand my results?
Genetic test results are only given by highly trained genomic consultants who explain each aspect of every result. A clinic letter will be sent to each client and their general practitioners and / or other medical specialists summarizing the case, risks and results. The genomic consultants are also available by telephone to discuss or review the results at a later stage after the appointment.
Is it expensive?
An initial consultation is $200 with all review appointments $140.
Will it hurt?
Depending on the test, DNA is obtained either from a blood or saliva sample.
Is genetic testing only for people with diagnoses?
No. Genetic testing may be used to help diagnose a particular condition in an affected person. However genetic testing may also occur in unaffected people who may be at risk of certain condition or disease, in people to see if they carry a particular condition or in pregnant women to check the genetic health of the baby they are carrying.
Can I claim testing through Medicare?
Some of the services offered at Insight Genomica are available through the public health system, which is usually free of charge. A handful of genetic tests are claimable by medicare through the public health system, however strict testing criteria applies. Public health often also has long waiting times to be seen. Having a genetic assessment appointment at Insight Genomica is private health and is funded by the client.
My GP says I need genetic counselling, I don’t need counselling, I just need the test. Can my GP order the genetic test?
GP’s do a great job in the community in primary health care. Most GP’s are not experts in genetics or genetic testing. Genomic Consultants are experts in ordering the correct genetic test and interpreting the results. GP’s cannot order most genetic tests meaning that testing needs to be facilitated through your genetic health specialist with results communicated to back to the GP and other specialist doctors.
What makes you different from other organizations?
We have an uncompromising integrity and believe that the best use of technology is to ease people’s lives. We are here to create a difference to the way genetics can help in touching lives. Our clients’ satisfaction and feedback reflects on the “Personal touch” that we pride ourselves with.