How Much Does Genetic Testing Cost During Pregnancy

How To Get Nipt

NUR325A Genetic Testing Before & During Pregnancy
  • NIPT can generally be ordered by your health care provider, such as family doctor, obstetrician or nurse practitioner. In Ontario, NIPT cannot currently be ordered by midwives. Sometimes, your health care provider may refer you to a genetics centre for further counselling, which may include a discussion about NIPT.
  • The blood work for OHIP-funded NIPT is done at either a LifeLabs or Dynacare location, depending on which test your provider orders for you.

Should Professional Societies Consider Cost And Cost

Cost and cost-effectiveness are paramount for professional societies to consider as they create guidelines. Cost-effective allocation of resources is essential not only for the individual utilizing prenatal genetic tests, but also for the clinic or hospital through which she is receiving care and for society at large. Examples of society recommendations for specific testing strategies are those in the Choosing Wisely publication from SMFM, which among other pathways for testing, advises that cfDNA testing should not be offered to low-risk patients and that irreversible decisions should not be pursued based on results of this screening test.

Society recommendations surrounding cost and cost-effectiveness should be publicized, and it is the responsibility of societies to shape conversations and explain the rationale behind their statements. This creates a system of accountability, and provides justification for clinician practice patterns as well as coverage afforded by third party payors. Finally, in the interest of transparency and clarity, societies have a duty to acknowledge when costs and cost-effectiveness are a driving force behind their recommendations.

When To Get Nipt

NIPT can be done at various stages in the pregnancy, as shown in the Prenatal Screening Pathway.

  • Some pregnant individuals will have NIPT as the first prenatal genetic screen in their pregnancy, and it can be done as early as 9 or 10 weeks gestation depending on the lab. A nuchal translucency ultrasound in the first trimester can still be performed to provide additional information about the health of the baby.
  • Other pregnant individuals will start with a traditional screening test and then may decide to have NIPT if the traditional screening reports a positive result, or if there are concerns on one of the ultrasounds.

You May Like: Lasik During Pregnancy

What Are The Research Priorities

Genetic testing capabilities have grown exponentially over the past decade, and screening as well as diagnostic options during pregnancy have drastically expanded. With this expansion has come marked improvement in our ability to diagnose genetic conditions prenatally, counsel families about prognosis and recurrence risk, and anticipate neonatal needs. However, many additional uncertainties have been raised in conjunction with improved testing capabilities, and limitations exist in the current knowledge that guides our practice patterns for offering and counseling women about options for prenatal genetic testing.

British Columbia Specific Information

Paternity Blood Tests That Work Early in a Pregnancy

In British Columbia, prenatal and newborn screening is offered free to all families.

During your pregnancy, your health care provider will offer prenatal screening. Prenatal screening can tell you your chance of having a baby with birth defects. The tests can consist of one or more blood tests and ultrasound. These tests are ordered by your health care provider and can be done at any hospital or laboratory. For more information on prenatal genetic screening, visit BC Womens Hospital & Health Centre Prenatal Screening and Perinatal Services BC – Prenatal Genetic Screening Program.

During the first few days after birth, your baby will have a newborn screening test, which includes a blood test and examination by a doctor or midwife. Early detection and treatment of some disorders can help prevent severe mental handicap, growth problems, health problems, or even sudden infant death. For more information on newborn screening, see HealthLinkBC File #67 Newborn Screening Test or visit Perinatal Services BC – Newborn Screening.

Don’t Miss: Can You Get Lasik Eye Surgery While Pregnant

What Are The Risks Of Genetic Testing

Some people face discrimination at work if they are known to have a genetic mutation.

If you have any genetic tests, you will probably need to declare them for any life insurance or income protection. If the tests identify a gene variant that increases your risk of disease, that might make it hard or impossible for you to get insurance.

Some of the companies that you can order tests from online are based overseas. They might be less careful about privacy than Australian companies. Some overseas companies sell information about genetic tests to others. Ordering tests from these companies has a risk that your private information could become available to others.

How Much Does Preconception Genetic Testing Cost

Preconception genetic testing, often called carrier screening, can cost between $0 and $400 depending on insurance coverage, the laboratory used, and the number of conditions screened for.

Most insurance companies cover basic carrier screening, which tests for a few genetic disorders that are recommended for everyone or recommended for people with specific ancestries. Some people choose to pursue expanded carrier screening, which screens for over 100 genetic conditions. Insurance companies are less likely to cover expanded carrier screening however, many genetic testing laboratories have self pay options, payment plans and programs to provide lower cost testing options to individuals with financial need.

More information about this testing can be found on the preconception genetic testing page.

Don’t Miss: Can You Donate Plasma When Pregnant

Is Preconception Genetic Testing Covered By Insurance

Insurance coverage for carrier screening depends on many factors, including what kind of testing is being ordered , whether the personâs ancestry makes them high risk to be a carrier of a genetic condition, and whether there is a family history of a genetic disorder. It is recommended that someone considering genetic testing talk with their insurance company to best understand what will, and will not, be covered and at what percent.

Costs Associated With Ultrasound And Prenatal Diagnosis

Genetic Testing During Pregnancy

Preconception Consultation.

This involves a meeting with a consultant obstetrician who specialises in maternal-fetal medicine, during which time any concerns that you may have about plans for an upcoming pregnancy can be discussed. 200

Specialist Second Opinions.

It is possible to meet with a consultant obstetrician who specialises in maternal-fetal medicine to discuss ongoing medical problems or complications that have developed during pregnancy, such as diabetes in pregnancy, a background history of epilepsy, high blood pressure, or challenges with a multiple gestation. 200

Early Pregnancy Assessment

Ultrasound scan confirming pregnancy viability and dates. 100

NIPT Fetal DNA test,

Genetic testing performed from 9 weeks of pregnancy onwards includes blood draw and ultrasound dating scan. This screening is a non-invasive prenatal screening test. It gives you a personalised risk score and tells you if your baby is at high risk or low risk for certain genetic conditions such as Down syndrome, Edwardss syndrome, PATAU syndrome or Triploidy. This test has a 99.9% detection rate. 430

Chorionic Villus Sampling

Performed in the Rotunda Hospital Fetal Assessment Unit and may cost up to 500 depending on the setting.


Performed in the Rotunda Hospital Fetal Assessment Unit and may cost up to 500 depending on the setting.

Fetal Anatomy Scan

This is a detailed head to toe ultrasound examination of the fetal anatomy and costs 200.

Fetal Echocardiography

Also Check: Can You Use Vagisil During Pregnancy

What Are The Types Of Tests

There are two types of birth defects tests: screening and diagnostic.

  • Screening tests show the chance that a baby has a certain birth defect. It can’t tell you for sure that your baby has a problem. If the test result is “positive,” it means that your baby is more likely to have that birth defect. So your doctor may want you to have a diagnostic test to make sure. If the screening test result is “negative,” it means that your baby probably doesn’t have that birth defect. But it doesn’t guarantee that you will have a normal pregnancy or baby.
  • Diagnostic tests show if a baby has a certain birth defect.

Screening tests for birth defects are blood tests and ultrasounds. The blood tests are used to look for the amount of certain substances in your blood. The doctor uses an ultrasound to look for certain changes in the baby. Diagnostic tests involve taking some of the baby’s cells to look at the genes and chromosomes.

No test is 100% accurate. A test may be negative even when the baby has a birth defect. This is called a false-negative test result. It’s also possible that a test will be positivemeaning the test result is abnormalbut the baby does not have the problem. This is called a false-positive test result.

You may have only first-trimester tests or only second-trimester tests. Or you may have an integrated test. This test combines the results of tests you have in your first trimester and second trimesters.

What Conditions Are And Arent Screened By This Test

Some prenatal screenings, like quad screenings and first trimester blood work, assess a fetus risk for chromosomal conditions. More advanced technologies, like NIPT, can determine a fetus risk of up to hundreds of other disorders, including Turner syndrome and triploidy .

But not all screenings and tests look at the same chromosomes, which means that they arent all testing for the same conditions. And chromosomal screenings cant assess your babys risk for genetic disorders like sickle cell anemia or neural tube defects like spina bifida congenital heart defects or developmental disorders.

In the end, you may opt for a combination of screenings, which can take place during different phases of pregnancy.

Read Also: How To Calculate Safe Days To Avoid Pregnancy

First Trimester Genetic Screening And Diagnostic Testing

Starting around week 10, pregnant women can receive first trimester screening and tests for certain chromosomal conditions. If the screening results indicate that your baby may have an abnormality, you can receive follow-up diagnostic testing to confirm or eliminate the diagnosis.

  • Noninvasive prenatal testing . NIPT is a blood test that analyzes DNA fragments that are circulating in a womans blood . The test, which can be done around week 10 of pregnancy, can screen for certain chromosomal abnormalities, including Down Syndrome, trisomy 18 and trisomy 13.
  • Nuchal translucency screening . The nuchal translucency screening is an ultrasound thats performed around weeks 10 to 13. This routine test measures the nuchal fold, an area of fluid behind the babys developing neck. Babies with increased fluid and swelling in this spot have a higher risk of chromosome abnormalities, such as Down syndrome. The hormonal levels drawn at the time of the NT can also indicate an elevated risk of preeclampsia.
  • Chorionic villus sampling . If an NIPT or NT shows that your baby has a higher than usual risk for certain congenital conditions, your doctor might recommend a diagnostic test called a chorionic villus sampling . This test will take a small sample of the placenta, which contains babys genes, and can confirm or rule out that your child has the chromosomal condition. CVS is typically done between week 10 and week 13 of pregnancy.

How Can You Tell Who The Father Is During Pregnancy

NIPT (Noninvasive prenatal testing)

A DNA paternity test is nearly 100% accurate at determining whether a man is another persons biological father. DNA tests can use cheek swabs or blood tests. You must have the test done in a medical setting if you need results for legal reasons. Prenatal paternity tests can determine fatherhood during pregnancy.

Recommended Reading: Lasik Eye Surgery And Pregnancy

Why Do A Gender Blood Test

One reason for a blood test is to avoid invasive prenatal testing in the case of a female baby.

The majority of the sex-linked disorders are recessive disorders linked to the X chromosome and are manifested exclusively in males as they contain only a single X chromosome. According to estimates, the X-linked recessive disorders may occur in around 5 out of 10,000 babies.

Non-invasive prenatal testing is adopted nowadays in health care systems in many countries worldwide. The aim of a blood test for baby sex determination is to decrease the total number of invasive prenatal tests since doctors refer only those pregnant with a male fetus for invasive testing.

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes In Your Area

When youre pregnant, you should have regular prenatal visits with a medical provider, usually an obstetrician, a midwife or your family practitioner. Besides measuring your blood pressure, weight, abdomen size and fetal heart rate, the doctor might order tests to screen for potential pregnancy problems or birth defects. Some of these tests are recommended for all pregnant women as part of preventive prenatal care, and should be fully covered by insurance, with no cost to you. These include routine screenings for gestational diabetes, anemia, bacteria in your urine, and a number of sexually transmitted infections.

Other tests are available to look for chromosomal abnormalities or other problems with the pregnancy. Depending on your insurance plan specifics, you may have to help cover their cost. Below, youll find information about some the most common tests women get during pregnancy:

Also Check: Is It Safe To Take Tums While Pregnant

Nipt Or Invasive Tests

Second trimester prenatal screening may include several blood or urine tests called multiple markers. These markers provide information about the risk of having a baby with certain genetic conditions or birth defects. The multiple markers include maternal serum AFP and maternal blood or urine estriol, inhibin, and human chorionic gonadotropin. Abnormal test results of AFP and other markers may mean that additional testing is needed. Since multiple marker screening is not diagnostic, it is not 100 percent accurate. It helps determine who should be offered additional testing during pregnancy.

Types Of Genetic Screening Tests

Prenatal Testing

The screening tests offered to you depend on which tests are available in your area, how far along you are in your pregnancy, and your health care professionals assessment of which tests best fit your needs. Any woman of any age, regardless of risk factors, can choose to have diagnostic testing instead of or in addition to screening tests.

Timing needs to be considered when having prenatal screening tests. With first-trimester testing, you have more options and more time to think about what an abnormal screening test result may mean for you and your family. With second-trimester testing, there is less time and fewer options.

Not all types of tests are covered by insurance companies. It is a good idea to check with your insurance company before you have any of these tests. If your company does not cover a test, you will have to pay for it yourself.

Also Check: Is It Safe To Use Vagisil Cream While Pregnant

Diagnostic Genetic Testing During Pregnancy

Chorionic villi sampling A small sample of placental tissue is obtained either transcervically or transabdominally under ultrasound guidance between 11-13 weeks of gestation.

Amniocentesis A small sample of amniotic fluid is removed by placing a needle into the amniotic cavity under ultrasound guidance after 16 weeks gestation.

A Safe Prenatal Genetic Test Is Gaining Popularity With Young Moms

During Carrie Wellss first OB/GYN visit after learning she was pregnant this summer, the 30-year-old was surprised when her doctor suggested a blood test that could detect her babys risk of Down syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities as early as 10 weeks. At her age, she hadnt been worried about conceiving a child with a genetic disorder.

Wellss obstetrician/gynecologist explained that the test, called a cell-free DNA screen, analyzes the fetal genetic information that travels from the mothers placenta and poses no risk to the baby. The doctor had been routinely prescribing it for her patients who were older and higher risk, now she was prescribing it to younger women, as well.

The doctors reasoning: women under 35 had more babies overall and account for 80 percent of countrys 6,000 annual Down births, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She explained that the test was more accurate than the current standard of care for younger women, which can include other blood tests and an ultrasound to measure the fluid at the base of the fetuss neck that can signal the presence of Down. Plus, the parents could learn the gender during the first trimester if they wanted, rather than wait to see the babys anatomy on the 20-week ultrasound.

ACOG is reviewing its position, says Chris Zahn, ACOGs vice president for practice activities.

It was a huge relief, she says. I thought, Now we can tell people and celebrate.

Also Check: Can You Donate Plasma While Pregnant

Other Common Tests During Pregnancy

Other tests a pregnant woman might need include genetic tests, a group B strep culture, fetal monitoring, or a 24-hour urine test for preeclampsia. As with the other examples, her costs will depend on whether or not she has insurance, how much her provider bills for them, and how her insurance covers them.

While more plans are charging more of the costs of care to the insured patient in recent yearsaverage deductibles for both in- and out-of-network care have more than doubled since 2009, according to the Advisory Boardsome still have generous coverage for pregnancy.

Women whove been pregnant in recent years, especially those who are insured through large employers, have reported relatively reasonable co-pays and other out-of-pocket costs. Still, read your own plan literature closely, and make a careful selection when you choose a health insurance plan, if pregnancy costs are in your future.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the authors opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Would You Pay For Genetic Testing

Paternity Test During Pregnancy

When Angelina Jolie recently revealed that her decision to undergo a double mastectomy stemmed directly from the fact that she’d tested positive for a BRCA1 gene mutationputting her at a nearly 90% risk of developing breast cancerit turned genetic testing into a hot topic practically overnight.

Ever since the human genome was unraveled a decade ago, research in the field of genetics has advanced at a breakneck speed. Ten years ago, you could take a test to find genetic links for about 900 diseasestoday, that number is more than 2,500. And what was once considered an expensive procedure that could only be administered in a medical setting can now cost as little as $100 for a DNA test you can take at home.

But while it’s true that genetic testing can provide important information for diagnosing, treating and, in Jolie’s case, even preventing diseases, its not always clear which tests are really worth getting. So before you decide to follow the Hollywood starlets example, check out our guide to testing the genetic waters.

Genetic Basics: The Two Types of Tests

At-Home Kits

Want to find out if you’re at risk of developing osteoarthritis, psoriasis or celiac disease? Nowadays, anyone can unlock such secrets concealed within their DNA with an at-home kit. In fact, for just $99, you can purchase one online from the California-based personal genetics company 23andMe. Simply mail in a saliva sample, and six to eight weeks later, your genetic fortune is at your fingertips.

Also Check: Can You Get Braces While Pregnant

Related Posts

Recent Stories