Confidentiality is of paramount importance in genetic risk assessment. Although your family and medical history is maintained in the hospital electronic database, we do not release the results of genetic testing to anyone but you, unless you provide us with written consent. Only the health care professionals within the NorthShore system have access to your genetics information.
A patient may designate, in writing, with whom we may share genetic information (e.g., physicians or family members).
If a patient is referred by a physician for a consultation, we must communicate with the physician in writing or verbally, and will ask your permission to do so.
Occasionally we will discuss genetic issues in patient conferences, if the patient's care is under discussion. In the patient conferences, specific patient names are not used.
We do not release any genetic information to insurance companies without the patient’s consent. If a patient undergoes genetic testing and the insurance company pays for the genetic testing, the insurance company does not have the right to ask for the results of the testing in the state of Illinois. In our experience, no insurance company that has covered the cost of genetic testing for a patient has called the Center for Medical Genetics and asked for the genetic test results. If this were to happen, we would inform the patient first and discuss the issue before we sent the insurance company any genetic information.