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Genetic testing moves into world of employee health

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http://www.myfoxny.com/story/28919127/genetic-testing-moves-into-world-of-employee-health

 

Posted: Apr 28, 2015 10:59 AM CDTUpdated: Apr 28, 2015 11:03 AM CDT
 

TOM MURPHY

Your employer may one day help determine if your genes are why your jeans have become too snug.

Big companies are considering blending genetic testing with coaching on nutrition and exercise to help workers lose weight and improve their health before serious conditions like diabetes or heart disease develop. It's a step beyond the typical corporate wellness programs that many companies are using to make workers more aware of their risk factors and improve their health.

Genetic testing in corporate wellness programs also is relatively uncharted territory. Many employers and insurers cover these tests and counseling for medical reasons, like helping people determine if they are more prone to certain cancers. And earlier this year, President Obama asked the U.S. Congress to approve spending on medical research into using a patient's genes to tailor care.

Mixing generic testing into a wellness program may create a tool attractive to employers desperate to cut health care costs, one of the biggest expenses in a company's budget. But employee benefits experts have doubts that such a novel approach will gain momentum. It first has to conquer steep challenges like employee worry about sharing such sensitive information and employer skepticism about its effectiveness.

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the genetic testing can evidently tell quite a lot about people
 and is not that expensive

I have thought about getting mine tested - it's like $100 my friend who had it done told me

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