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Genetic Testing Can Help the US Cut Costs and Improve Health Care
Date:7/25/2011

on cancer, thus avoiding ineffective treatment and reducing adverse events. "According to one estimate, the US health care system could save $700 million annually if test were done before prescribing the drug," said Mertz.

Using genetic tests to select the right dose of the most common blood thinner, warfarin, could save a whopping $1.1 billion annually, according to a 2006 Brookings/AEI estimate, Mertz said. A study from June 2010 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology reported that use of the test could reduce hospitalizations from inaccurate dosing by 31%.

Mertz also cited a recently released Battelle report that found that between 1988 and 2010, human genome sequencing projects -- which includes genetic testing -- generated $796 billion in US economic output, $244 billion in personal income for Americans, and 3.8 million job-years of employment.

"Genetic testing offers new tools to help us manage disease and use our health care resources wisely," said Mertz. "It also opens a world of economic potential in jobs, growth, and output."

The American Clinical Laboratory Association represents the nation's clinical reference laboratories. For more information go to: www.clinical-labs.org/


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