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Williams v Quest/Athena

The development is a positive for plaintiff Amy Williams, who has said she hopes her lawsuit will spur greater accountability and transparency among genetic testing labs.

Though the South Carolina Supreme Court said Quest was a healthcare provider, Williams can try to keep her case alive by arguing she's alleging ordinary negligence.

The court's ruling that Quest was acting as a licensed healthcare provider could affect the statute of limitations in the suit.

The court's determination is critical to deciding if Williams v Quest/Athena can advance or if it must be dismissed on statute of repose grounds. 

Attendees at the recent AMP meeting grappled with issues brought to light in a lawsuit regarding the alleged negligent misclassification of a patient's genetic variant.

In Williams v Quest/Athena, a federal district court judge has asked the highest state court to clarify if a genetic testing lab is a licensed healthcare provider.

Judge Margaret Seymour held a hearing to better understand the facts of the case before deciding whether it should go forward.

Experts pointed out the lack of clarity in professional standards and regulations when it comes to dealing with genetic variation in patient care. 

A high-profile, independent committee is considering the liability issues impacting labs as genetic testing increasingly becomes integrated into patient care.

It is now up to Margaret Seymour, a senior judge in US District Court in the District of South Carolina, whether Williams' case should be dismissed or decided by a jury.

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