General Questions 

TEST RESULTS

Test results are available in your patient portal, SonicMyAccess. You will also receive a notification once your test results are ready to view.

BILLING & INSURANCE

Most insurance companies cover reproductive health testing; however, depending on the testing ordered by your provider, insurance coverage can vary. We are sensitive to the costs associated with reproductive health testing and are committed to ensuring that every patient has access to our high-quality tests. Our care specialists will reach out if it is determined the testing ordered is a non-covered service.

For the most accurate information regarding coverage and financial responsibility, contact your insurance company. Additionally, you may contact our Care Specialists to receive price estimates for carrier screening and non-invasive prenatal screening.

Contact our Care Specialists

Payment is not due upfront but can be paid at the time of service.

Prior authorization is a process used by many insurance companies to determine if a procedure, service, or medication will be covered before services are rendered. Most insurance companies require prior authorization for certain genetic and molecular laboratory testing. The Member Services or Customer Service department at your insurance company should be able to provide you with specific requirements for your policy. Upon receipt of your lab orders and sample, our team will contact your insurance company to verify eligibility and benefits along with prior authorization requirements. After the prior authorization case is approved by your insurance company, testing can begin. If prior authorization is denied, our Care Specialists will reach out to discuss options.

Unfortunately, once we file your insurance, we cannot adjust the bill. We can set you up on a payment plan or see if you qualify for our assistance program.

If you have health insurance, our out-of-pocket cost estimator tool can provide an estimate of how much you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket after your insurance is billed, based on your specific insurance plan. Your estimate will include only the costs for the specific lab services requested. As a laboratory, we cannot reasonably predict what other medical services a patient may need and, therefore, cannot provide any estimated costs that may be charged by other unrelated health care providers or facilities, including any estimated charges by the health care provider who orders your laboratory test. The out-of-pocket amount is just an estimate and is not a confirmation of the laboratory test authorization from the health insurance plan. Contacting your health insurance provider is the most reliable source of information for your out-of-pocket estimated amount.

We can send you a bill or you can pay at the time of service.

Yes, we have a financial assistance program. We offer payment plans as well as a program based on income.

GENETIC COUNSELING

Genetic counseling is currently available for NIPS and carrier screening only (see question below).

A genetic counselor will reach out to any patient who receives an abnormal result or a result that indicates a chromosome condition unless otherwise indicated. The patient must be registered with our patient portal, SonicMyAccess, and accept the prompt for genetic counseling. A separate email will be sent to finalize enrollment for genetic counseling. If you would like to schedule a session, you may do so through the portal at your convenience.

Unless otherwise indicated, a genetic counselor will automatically reach out to any patient with a result that is high risk or indicates a chromosome condition.

Genetic counseling for high-risk results or results indicative of a chromosome condition is provided at is covered in the price of the initial testing. Pre-test counseling services can be arranged directly with Metis Genetics and may result in a separate charge.

Yes, Metis Genetics will send a copy of your genetic counseling summary report to your provider unless otherwise indicated.

Our counseling service will attempt to reach out three times to reschedule. Patients may also set their own appointment by accessing SonicMyAccess and advancing into the genetic counseling portal.

Non-Invasive Prenatal Screening

NIPS, or non-invasive prenatal screening, is a screening test designed to screen patients who are pregnant for the common chromosome conditions. Since it is a screening test, it cannot give you a “yes” or “no” answer but tells you if you are at higher or lower risk for the conditions being screened. These conditions vary depending on what your provider ordered but will include conditions such as Down syndrome, and two other serious conditions called trisomy 18 and trisomy 13. For more information on these conditions, we encourage you to speak with your provider or visit our non-invasive prenatal screening page.

 

Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome1)

  •  Trisomy 21 occurs in approximately 1 in every 660 live births
  • Clinical presentation is variable. Common characteristics of trisomy 21 include:
    • Mild to moderate intellectual disability and developmental delay
    • Characteristic facial features
    • Structural heart anomalies
    • Low or poor muscle tone
    • Can live to adulthood

Trisomy 18 (Edwards syndrome1)

  • Trisomy 18 occurs in approximately 1 in every 3,333 live born infants
  • Life expectancy is usually less than one year
  • Clinical presentation is variable. Common characteristics of trisomy 18 include: 
    • Intrauterine growth retardation
    • Unusual positioning of the hands and/or feet
    • Heart and other organ anomalies
    • Severe developmental delay and intellectual disabilities

Trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome1)

  • Trisomy 13 occurs in approximately 1 in every 5,000 live born infants
  • Life expectancy is usually less than 1 year
  • Clinical presentation is variable. Common characteristics of trisomy 13 include:
    •  Heart, brain, kidney abnormalities
    • Incomplete fusion of the lip and/or palate (clefting)
    • Severe developmental and intellectual disabilities

Results from NIPS take approximately 5 days. If your provider ordered a more in-depth panel, results could take approximately 5-7 days. Please check with your provider to determine what was ordered to verify the turn-around-time.

All results will be shown when you access your result online. Fetal sex will not be hidden.

A “low probability” result is the most common result among individuals who have NIPS. Low probability will be reported when there is a low possibility that the developing fetus has one of the specific chromosome conditions. NIPS does not screen for all genetic conditions and a low probability result does not guarantee that the developing fetus does not have the conditions screened for, or other conditions not included in your test result.

A “high probability” result will be reported when there is a difference in the expected amount of DNA that shows up in your blood sample. This means the developing fetus has a significantly increased chance of having one of the specific chromosome conditions. NIPS does not screen for all genetic conditions and a high probability result does not guarantee the fetus is affected. A number of unusual clinical conditions may cause a “false-positive” result, so all high probability results should be confirmed with diagnostic testing or other clinical information prior to medical decision making. Patients should be offered genetic counseling for high probability results.

The accuracy for fetal sex is greater than 99% for both singletons and twin gestations2. Discordant results can occur; however, they are rare. If you have additional questions, we encourage you to speak with your provider or schedule a genetic counseling session through Metis Genetics (see Metis question).

In some cases, results are unable to give accurate information about chromosome conditions or sex chromosome aneuploidy. This can be for many reasons, but most often occurs when there is not significant enough fetal DNA to examine. Redrawing your NIPS is an option; however, your provider will discuss all options available to you in the rare event you do not receive a result.

For the most accurate information regarding coverage and financial responsibility, contact your insurance company. Additionally, you may contact our Care Specialists to receive price estimates for carrier screening and non-invasive prenatal screening.

Contact our Care Specialists

Most insurance companies cover non-invasive prenatal screening (NIPS); however, insurance coverage varies. We are sensitive to the costs associated with planning a pregnancy and are committed to ensuring that every patient has access to our high-quality tests. Our care specialists will reach out if it is determined the testing ordered is a non-covered service.

Carrier Screening

Carrier screening may determine if you are at increased risk to have a child with certain genetic conditions.3. The type of conditions will vary depending on the carrier screening your provider ordered. For more information on these conditions, we encourage you to speak with your provider or visit our carrier screening page, sign up for our patient portal, SonicMyAccess, or sign up for a genetic counseling session through Metis Genetics (see Metis question)*.

The conditions included in our carrier screening program are:

  • Cystic fibrosis (CF)
  • Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA)
  • Fragile X
  • Hemoglobinopathies (inherited anemias)
    • Thalassemia diseases
    • Sickle cell disease
    • Other hemoglobin variants

Additional screening is available, for example, when both parents have Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry. We also offer Basic, Classic, and Complete Panels with varying numbers of genetic conditions included. Details are available on our carrier screening page.

In expanded carrier screening, many disorders are screened using a single sample. Some panels test for more than 150 different disorders. Screening panels usually focus on severe disorders that affect a person’s quality of life from an early age.

The average turnaround time for these tests is approximately 10-14 days.

Yes. Depending on the condition, individual tests or panels are available.

The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) makes it illegal for most health insurers to require genetic testing results or use results to make decisions about coverage, rates, or preexisting conditions. GINA also makes it illegal for employers to discriminate against employees or applicants because of genetic information. GINA does not apply to life insurance, long-term care insurance, or disability insurance.

If you find out that you are a carrier of a gene for a genetic disorder, you may want to tell other family members. They may be at risk of being carriers themselves. There is no law that states that you have to do so. If you choose to tell family members, your ob-gyn or genetic counselor can advise you about the best way to do this. It cannot be done without your consent.

If you are planning a pregnancy, you may want to consider genetic carrier screening before you are pregnant. This is also called preconception carrier screening (i.e., screening before the pregnancy begins). Preconception screening has the advantage of giving more reproductive options if a couple is at risk for one of these conditions. Preconception carrier screening can be arranged by talking with your health care provider.

For the most accurate information regarding coverage and financial responsibility, contact your insurance company. Additionally, you may contact our Care Specialists to receive price estimates for carrier screening and non-invasive prenatal screening.

Contact our Care Specialists

Most insurance companies cover duo and trio carrier screening; however, insurance coverage varies. We are sensitive to the costs associated with planning a pregnancy and are committed to ensuring that every patient has access to our high-quality tests. Our care specialists will reach out if it is determined the testing ordered is a non-covered service.

No, partner testing is a separate test that is run in the laboratory and is therefore billed.

References:

1. Thompson and Thompson. (2007). Genetics in Medicine, seventh edition. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier.

2. VeriSeq NIPT Solution v2 Package Insert. Illumina In Vitro Diagnostic Instruction for Use. Document#1000000078751v06. August 2021.

3. Carrier screening for genetic conditions. Committee Opinion No. 691. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstet Gynecol 2017;129:e41–55.