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Getting Used to It

Primary care physicians are increasingly more comfortable with discussing direct-to-consumer genetic testing results with their patients, according to a new report from 23andMe and Medscape.

The pair surveyed 1,000 primary care physicians on Medscape. Ninety percent of the respondents were family or internal medicine practitioners and had been practicing for an average 19 years. The survey found that 80 percent of primary care physicians were open to or likely to recommend DTC genetic testing if their patients asked and that about 70 percent were comfortable referring patients to specialists based on DTC genetic testing results.

The findings, 23andMe says in its press release, suggest primary care physicians are about twice as likely to be comfortable with discussing the risk, benefits, and limitations of testing and discussing testing results than respondents to a similar survey in 2018.

At 23andMe's blog, Okey Onyejekwe, theVice President of Healthcare Operations and Medical Affairs at 23andMe, says the results indicate "a significant shift in how primary care physicians view direct-to-consumer genetic health testing."