Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing: Providing Personalized Medicine

Activity description

Genetic testing, marketed directly to customers, has become more and more prevalent and is expanding the number of people who are obtaining information about their DNA (or genome). Consumers send in a DNA sample and receive their results directly; in most cases, bypassing a health care professional (HCP). Consumers may receive confusing or unexpected results and may be in need of competent guidance from a knowledgeable HCP. This four-part podcast will provide an overview on direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing, the role of HCPs in helping consumers make educated decisions about using these services and the future of DTC genetic testing.

Provided by
This activity is jointly provided by OptumHealth Education and UnitedHealthcare.

Commercial support
No commercial support was received for this activity.
Required hardware/software
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Target Audience

This activity is designed to meet the educational needs of case managers, counselors, educators, nurses, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, PAs, physicians, psychologists, social workers, therapists and other HCPs who have an interest in DTC genetic testing.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this educational activity, participants should be able to:

  • List the available DTC genetic tests.
  • Describe and interpret DTC genetic testing results.
  • Identify situations in which DTC tests may be clinically actionable.
  • Explore next steps and available resources following DTC genetic testing with patients and/or their families.
  • State what the future holds for DTC genetic testing.

Additional Information

Activity summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacists
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacy Technicians
  • 1.00 AMA - Physicians
  • 1.00 ANCC - Nurses
  • 1.00 APA - Psychologists
  • 1.00 Attendance - General Attendance
  • 1.00 CCMC - General - Case Managers
  • 1.00 ASWB - Social Workers
Activity opens: 
Activity expires: 

Robin K. Blitz, MDRobin K. Blitz, MD
Senior Medical Director
Special Needs Initiative / Complex Health Solutions
Phoenix, AZ

Robin K. Blitz, MD is a board-certified, developmental-behavioral pediatrician and is currently the medical director for UnitedHealthcare’s Special Needs Initiative / Complex Health Solutions. Dr. Blitz has almost 30 years of experience providing care for children with special health care needs and educating healthcare providers, residents, medical students, educators and families. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. Dr. Blitz’s clinical interests include medical home care, shared decision making, supported decision making, transition to adult care, the special needs of foster and adopted children, prenatal alcohol and drug exposure, Down syndrome, adverse childhood experiences, autism spectrum disorder, Fragile X syndrome, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, the care of premature infants and children with multiple developmental disabilities.

Stephanie Byers Asher, MS, LCGCStephanie Byers Asher, MS, LCGC
Senior Genetic Counselor
Division of Translational Medicine and Human Genetics
Penn Medicine
Philadelphia, PA 

Stephanie Byers Asher, MS, LCGC, is a certified genetic counselor who has multiple years of experience providing laboratory and clinical genetic counseling across a wide variety of fields. Ms. Asher previously worked at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia providing general genetic counseling, as well as genetic counseling in the specialty clinics for Williams syndrome, connective tissue disorders and metabolic disease. At the University of Pennsylvania, her roles have expanded to include not only clinical genetic counseling in cancer genetics, adult-onset neurodegenerative disorders, general genetics and specialty clinics, but also the development of multidisciplinary clinics in otorhinolaryngology, gastroenterology and cardiovascular surgery. In addition to her clinical responsibilities, Ms. Asher has been actively involved in research and the education of genetics trainees.

Activity planners
Sarah Chart, RN
Senior Director
OptumHealth Education
Eden Prairie, MN

Rebecca Gleason, RN, CCM
Activity Manager
OptumHealth Education
Eden Prairie, MN

Disclosures of relevant financial relationships
In accordance with the ACCME Standards for Commercial SupportSM, OptumHealth Education requires all those in control of activity content to disclose their relevant financial relationships. An individual has a relevant financial relationship if such person (or his/her spouse/partner) has a financial relationship in any amount occurring in the last 12 months with a commercial interest whose products or services relate to the activity content.

OptumHealth Education ensures that the content is independent of commercial bias.

Ms. Chart and Ms. Gleason have indicated that they are employees of and own stock in UnitedHealth Group.

The remaining activity faculty or planners have no financial relationships to disclose.

Method for calculating CE credit
CE credit was calculated by the complexity of content.

Accreditation statement
Joint Provider LogoIn support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by OptumHealth Education and UnitedHealthcare. OptumHealth Education is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the health care team.

Credit designation statements
IPCE Credit LogoThis activity was planned by and for the health care team, and learners will receive 1.00 Interprofessional Continuing Education (IPCE) credits for learning and change.

The participant will be awarded up to 1.00 contact hour(s) of credit for attendance and completion of supplemental materials.

Nurse practitioners
The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANPCP) accepts credit from organizations accredited by the ACCME and ANCC.

Pharmacists/Pharmacy technicians
This activity is approved for 1.00 contact hour ([0.10] CEU) in states that recognize ACPE.
Attending the full program will earn 1.00 contact hour.
Unique Activity Number(s): JA0007123-9999-20-148-H01-P/T

OptumHealth Education designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) accepts credit from organizations accredited by the ACCME.

Case managers
The Commission for Case Manager Certification has approved this program for a maximum of 1.00 clock hours for Certified Case Managers (CCM).

OptumHealth Education is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to offer continuing education for psychologists. OptumHealth Education maintains responsibility for this program. 1.00 CE hour.

Social workers
ACE LogoAs a Jointly Accredited Organization, OptumHealth Education is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved under this program. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. OptumHealth Education maintains responsibility for this course. Social workers completing this course receive 1.00 enduring continuing education credits.

Counselors and/or marriage and family therapists
CA: The Board of Behavioral Sciences has deferred CE course approvals to APA and ASWB for its licensees. See those approvals under Psychologists and Social Workers.
Other States: If your state is not specifically listed, nearly all state Counselor and MFT boards accept either APA or ASWB approval, or are reciprocal with other state licensing board approvals, such as those listed below. Check with your board to be sure.

A certificate of attendance will be provided to learners upon completion of activity requirements, enabling participants to register with licensing boards or associations that have not been preapproved for credits. To apply for credit types not listed above, participants should use the procedure established by the specific organization from which they wish to obtain credit.

Available Credit

  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacists
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacy Technicians
  • 1.00 AMA - Physicians
  • 1.00 ANCC - Nurses
  • 1.00 APA - Psychologists
  • 1.00 Attendance - General Attendance
  • 1.00 CCMC - General - Case Managers
  • 1.00 ASWB - Social Workers
Please log in to register.

You must be logged into your account to participate in this activity. Get started by clicking “Continue” and following the instructions. At the end of the activity, you will be able to view, save or print your certificate of participation. A complete listing of all of your activities can be found under “My Account,” “My Activities.”

Please listen to all episodes of the podcast that you intend to before claiming credit.  Each episode is eligible for 0.25 credits; the entirety of the podcast is eligible for 1.00 credits.