Genetic testing at home: Is it worth the price? “It’ Not Just About Ancestry … that’s cool, but it’s finite.” ~Editor
By Concierge Medicine Today | The DPC Journal | CMT CANADA | YOUTube Channel
Genetic testing is in the news this past week so I thought I would send you an video with some possibly helpful clarifications. Everyone will upgrade to whole genome now or later as the price comes down. But, we’ve got to know what these companies are doing with our data. Today, if you simply Google “DNA Test” or “Genetic Test” you will receive millions (yes, millions!) of search results. For years, the ability to identify genetic health risks for common diseases and to discover your ancestral roots was out of the price range of most people. But that has changed in recent times. Today, the starting price point is $99! The price just keeps going lower and lower as more competitors enter the field. It’s even cheaper when you begin to look at your Biome. But, that’s a conversation for another day.
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While there’s no evidence that these companies have let anyone’s genetic data fall into the hands of hackers—or anything half that bad—their policies do grant them free rein to host, transfer, process, analyze, distribute, and communicate your genetic information. You still technically own your DNA, but they own the rights to what’s in it—after it’s been anonymized and deidentified, of course. Both companies say the primary way they use this genetic data is to improve their products and services. But both have research partnerships that involve exchanging data for money—23andMe with drug companies like Pfizer and Genentech, Ancestry with Alphabet longevity spinout Calico. ~[Wired.com; 2]
What do you get?
What you get back from these limited tests is a really simply breakdown of your global ancestry by percentages. You even have the ability to opt-in to connect via direct message with people who share DNA with you. That’s cool but that’s scary too. What are these companies doing with the data? How can they do this so cost effectively or “cheap?” Are they going to eventually find a way to monetize my data and sell individual customer information?
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The data, however, should be owned by the patient. Their Physician can help direct them on how to apply the information contained in WGS to maximize its benefits,” states Michael Tetreault, Editor of Concierge Medicine Today. “Patients need the ability to securely store, use, and understand genetic data.” Concierge Medicine Today advises this should be accomplished through physician involvement and technology that integrates genetic data into software applications [apps]. Software apps are now available that analyze genetic data and transform the data into actionable information that can have a real impact on health. 
This is your DNA. This is YOU! It is individualized genetic code information and it’s yours and yours alone. It’s important. Don’t sell out.
People’s genetic code is important. It’s a very valuable commodity and companies are doing great things with this code and insight. But be cautious. Who owns your data? Where will they and more importantly, who will they sell it to? Think denials for life insurance are bad now? What is those companies had access to your genetic health data and genetic reports. Yeah.
This conversation must be about health, not simply fun ancestry anecdotes.
Today, you can get reports about your genetic health risk of developing hereditary Thrombophilia, late-onset Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease. You can also learn if you’re a carrier of the genes for Cystic Fibrosis, Sickle Cell Anemia and hereditary hearing loss, among other diseases. With prices this low, the question then becomes…should you spend your hard-earned money on at-home genetic testing or talk to your doctor about something more applicable?
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In theory, genetic testing at-home is supposed to help people. The idea is that disease management will be greatly improved when medical providers can offer guidelines for patients who know they’re genetically predisposed to certain diseases. But there’s always the danger that if someone gets a report indicating susceptibility to certain genetic illnesses, they’ll go into full freak-out mode. So if you’re the kind of person who would worry yourself sick about a bad genetic report, then you may want to stay away from these kinds of tests — even if you are tempted by the increasingly low price point.
SOURCE:  http://clark.com/health-health-care/genetic-testing-at-home-is-it-worth-the-price/;  https://www.wired.com/story/ancestrys-genetic-testing-kits-are-heading-for-your-stocking-this-year/?mbid=nl_120117_daily_list3_p3;  https://conciergemedicinetoday.org/2016/11/10/concierge-medicine-today-issues-statement-of-support-for-use-of-whole-genome-sequencing-the-clarity-provided-by-a-patients-dna-can-empower-a-concierge-physician-to/
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