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prepare for your visit

During your first visit with one of our genetic specialists, they may ask questions about medical conditions that run in your family, including birth defects, developmental delays, autism, cancer, cardiovascular disease and more. Before your visit, reach out to family members to collect information about your family health history. While collecting this history, please respect your family’s privacy – some individuals may not be comfortable sharing. 

health information to collect:  

  • Important diagnoses as a child and as an adult 
  • Name of condition(s) 
  • Age of diagnosis 
  • Any cancer history 
  • Cardiovascular disorders
  • Any health conditions present in multiple relatives across generations  
  • Age of onset

other information to collect: 

  • Age, if deceased, age and cause of death 
  • Ethnicity, race 
  • Lifestyle & environmental factors
  • Exposures that may have increased risk 

Family health history can be stored as a list. To help record this information use the CDC’s My family health protrait tool



How much time should I allow for this appointment? 

  • Please arrive 20 minutes prior to your appointment to register. Allow a total of 1-1/2 hours to cover the registration time, the actual appointment, and lab time (if needed).  

Will insurance cover this appointment? 

  • A genetics visit is separate from genetic testing and is billed as a specialist visit, similar to a visit to any other specialist (gastroenterology, orthopedics, etc.). If you have deductibles, co-pays, or co-insurance these will apply. Like other specialists’ services, our services are often covered. However, every insurance plan is different. You may want to check the terms of your plan before your appointment. Some insurance plans require a referral from your doctor. 

Will my insurance cover genetic testing? 

  • Insurance coverage for genetic testing will be discussed with you at your appointment. During your appointment, the genetics provider will go over your personal and family history and will determine what type of testing is needed. However, please note that there are specific guideline requirements for genetic testing and you may or may not require testing. Testing involves a simple blood test or a spit test. No fasting or special instructions are required. 

Is a prior authorization needed? 

  • Prior authorization may be needed for genetic testing and your genetics provider will discuss prior authorization during or after your visit. We are unable to perform a prior authorization for genetic testing prior to your appointment, since most insurance companies require a genetics visit before authorization can be completed.