Publication Date



[Excerpt] Congress has considered, at various points in time, numerous pieces of legislation that relate to genetic and genomic technology and testing. These include bills addressing genetic discrimination in health insurance and employment; precision medicine; the patenting of genetic material; and the oversight of clinical laboratory tests (in vitro diagnostics), including genetic tests. The focus on these issues signals the growing importance of public policy issues surrounding the clinical and public health implications of new genetic technology. As genetic technologies proliferate and are increasingly used to guide clinical treatment, these public policy issues are likely to continue to garner attention. Understanding the basic scientific concepts underlying genetics and genetic testing may help facilitate the development of more effective public policy in this area.


Suggested Citation
Sarata, A. K. (2015). Genetic testing: Background and policy issues. Washington, DC: Congressional Research Service.