Genetic Testing Scams
In the United States, genetic testing has been available for close to 30 years and the science and technology involved in genetic testing are advancing daily. Unfortunately, genetic testing scams are also being schemed by fraudulent individuals by forcing unnecessary testing on people and coercing them into paying the bills. It is important to note that genetic testing has a whole lot of benefits.
Results from the testing can provide relief from certain uncertainties and help people in deciding on how to manage their health. For instance, a positive result will assist the patient in seeking treatments on time. The tests on some hereditary diseases can also help parents make decisions on giving birth to children. Genetic testing, be it for assessing disease risk or for ancestral research, is a great tool made possible through advances in sciences, computing capacity and sequencing of the human genome.
What seemed impossible many years back can now be accomplished with just a blood sample with the use of automated laboratory tools and some specialized expertise. And with the cost of genetic testing going as high as $10,000, scammers see opportunities in the area and fleece unsuspecting members of the public.
More Than the Needed Laboratories?
Genetic testing laboratories are sprouting all across the country, and this is because some health insurers now accept to pay for genetic testing in some circumstances. But the question now is: How many testing centers are enough? Are some diseases necessarily supposed to undergo genetic testing? With the new level of enlightenment in this specific area of medicine, it didn’t take a long time for devious people to come up with schemes to make CMS issue huge reimbursement cheques for fraudulent genetic testing.
How Scammers Operate in Genetic Testing
It is common nowadays to see people approach you, especially if you have Medicare, and offer you cheek swabs for genetic testing. This plot is only to get access to your Medicare data which they can then use for fraudulent billings and identity theft. What they do is to target beneficiaries through telemarketing calls, health fairs, public events, and home visitations.
Once a beneficiary accepts to get genetic testing done, a testing kit will be sent to such individual to get the samples they need, even if it is not approved by a medical doctor or it happens not to be medically necessary. But an ethical laboratory will surely detect there is something amiss when they come to them with such requests.
They will question them on how a person who is not a physician came across so much saliva samples and personal data of patients. A fraudulent lab on the other hand will overlook this, knowing fully well that the tests may not be medically needed or necessary at that time.
- If you receive a genetic testing mail, do not accept it except it unless it was as ordered by a licensed physician in your STATE that you had a prior consultation (in person or via HIPPA certified Tele-medicine).
- When you are being offered free genetic testing, you need to wary of such offers, especially when they request for your Medicare number. Once your personal information has been compromised by these scammers, they can use it for other fraudulent activities.
- Always ensure that before you carry out genetic testing, it must be approve and requested by a licensed physician and you have provided prior consent.
What We Do at CGX DNA Testing
We understand this is a new program and there are a lot of unscrupulous elements trying to take advantage of the Medicare system. But at CGX DNA Testing, we are only committed to providing the best service within our understanding of this program. When you approach us for genetic testing, we have our standards and we are governed by the rules covering the system.
What we don’t do at CGX DNA Testing
- We will not request the patient SIN
- We do not offer compensations to the patient for providing swabs
- We will not request that the patient supplies a swab without determining the necessity by obtaining information on the consultation between the patient and licensed medical personnel in the patient’s state of residence. We do this through a formal laboratory requisition form.
- We do not ask for any form of payment (Patient’s banking information or credit card)
- We do not share the client’s results and data with any 3rd party agency.
What we do at CGX DNA Testing
- We ensure that our partner laboratories use FDA-approved comprehensive inherited cancer testing within a CLIA Certified Lab.
- We comply with HIPPA standards of communications and privacy
- We give clients direct access to us through our toll-free number which they can call and make further inquiries.
- We conduct an initial screen for medical necessity at the call center
- We coordinate consultation with a licensed physician in the State the patient resides in (at no cost to the patient) who will ultimately review with the patient, the test and details of the patient’s personal and family history of cancer. The physician is the entity that officially issues a patient requisition form to the lab.
- We review the physician requisition form for a 2nd formal quality assurance to ensure a high probability that the patient will be covered.
- We coordinate via phone, sending of Bucall Swab to patient’s residence.
- Once a swab kit is sent, we assist with a simple in-home swab (via scheduled call) and provide pre-paid UPS packaging to send swab directly to the lab.
- All processes are monitored and tracked so we can determine the status of specimen results. Initial take, telemedicine, swab kit, lab results.
- Test results are sent directly to a physician that ordered the test and a follow-up call is initiated between physician and patient once results are received
- We are not privy to these test result as this is solely between the patient and the physician.
- At no time during the process (even if the swab is sent to the lab), if it is determined that Medicare Insurance will not cover the test, will the patient be charged. However if not covered, the lab cannot process the test and send the lab results to the patient.