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May 24, 2019updated 03 Jun 2019 2:37pm

Aetna launches DNA testing for health and lifestyle

By Patrick Brusnahan

Global health benefits provider Aetna International has launched DNA testing for its European members as part of its wellness plans.

The Aetna DNA testing will exclusively look at health and lifestyle. This includes nutrigenomics, fitness, sleep, and also stress. Its aim is to support Aetna members who want to take control of their health with personalised information to be a catalyst for change.

European members can purchase the DNA kit as an add-on product. It consists of a mouth swab and is available for a scheme of 10 employees or more at a discounted price of £75.

Members must register their kits online and provide consent. Email notifications are sent when the test has been analysed. Customers can then log in to a digital digital portal to explore the results.

Aetna stated that the unique aspect of this offering is the quantity and quality of post-test support. Consultations, follow-up help and assistance can all be accessed after the DNA testing.

Benefits include:

  • Health coaching;
  • An employee assistance programme, and
  • vHealth, the virtual care service.

Caroline Pain, senior vice president, customer proposition, at Aetna International commented: “We’re increasingly seeing people take a proactive approach to health, effectively becoming partners in their own care. It’s now possible to take a highly targeted approach to holistic wellbeing, with hyper-personalised and predictive health care.  By introducing this type of DNA testing, we’re ensuring our members have the opportunity to take advantage of these advances, combining an awareness of their genetics with digital and social support in changing their behaviours for the better.”

She added: “Genetic health and lifestyle testing is at the point of being mainstream, but there are a number of areas in which responsible providers need to tread carefully. Privacy is one, quality of tests is another, and knowing how to reliably interpret results is a third. Our members have the reassurance that all three are taken care of, and that we’re working with them to ensure they stay in optimum health.”

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