Cigna to cover genetic counseling via telehealth

Cigna now offers genetic counseling services to its customers and contracted healthcare providers through an agreement with telegenomics company Genome Medical.

Here are three things to know:

1. Genome Medical provides on-demand genetic counseling for primary care, cancer, cardiovascular conditions, reproductive health, pediatrics and pharmacogenetics via telehealth. For example, the company's medical geneticists, genetic counselors and pharmacists can help physicians and patients use genetic test results to understand their risk for disease and inform their treatment decisions.

2. Genome Medical is backed by GE Ventures, Illumina Ventures and Kaiser Permanente Ventures, among other investors. The company said its goal is to help physicians review and make care decisions informed by the growing availability and use of genetic testing.

3. Genome Medical began providing genetic counseling services to Cigna customers and contracted providers in October.

Jeffrey Hankoff, MD, medical director at Cigna, said, "We are committed to helping the people we serve access the genetic expertise and educational tools they need to make informed healthcare decisions for themselves and their families."

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