For Women and Men with Hereditary Breast or Ovarian Cancer and Positive BRCA1/2 Test Results, Check Your Genes Announces New Family Notification Service

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Check Your Genes, a non-profit with a mission to educate the public and health care professionals on the need for a formal genetic risk assessment and testing if an individual has a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, has launched the first of its kind, Family Notification Service. The service can be used by individuals to notify family members of their BRCA test results through a free, confidential online service.

Free Family Notification Service for those with BRCA1/2 mutations makes it easier to share results.

“If we can save just one life by someone using the service to share their test results, then we have accomplished our objective”, said Jim West, Check Your Genes President of the Board of Directors and Co-Founder.

Check Your Genes, a non-profit with a mission to educate the public and health care professionals on the need for a formal genetic risk assessment and testing if an individual has a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, has launched the first of its kind, Family Notification Service. The service can be used by individuals to notify family members of their BRCA test results through a free, confidential online service.

Through the Family Notification Service, an individual is able to customize template letters to send via email or postal mail. If letters are sent via email, all addresses are loaded into a secure account. A copy of the test result can be uploaded to accompany the email as well. If letters are sent through postal mail, letters may be customized and printed from the service.

“When we share results with patients, especially positive results, it can be quite overwhelming. This service makes it as easy as possible for someone to share their test results with immediate and extended family members,” commented Kristin Theobald, Genetic Counselor, St. Elizabeth Healthcare. “The template letters help overcome the obstacle of what to say. It’s confidential, secure and easy to use. ”

“If we can save just one life by someone using the service to share their test results, then we have accomplished our objective,” said Jim West, Check Your Genes President of the Board of Directors and Co-Founder.    

Check Your Genes founder Nancy West Romer was only 32 years old when she was diagnosed with late-stage ovarian cancer. She knew she had a family history of breast cancer but had no idea it was hereditary, or that a simple blood test could tell her she carried a mutation in the BRCA1 gene, which increased her risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer (those without the BRCA mutation are at 2% risk). Had Nancy known she carried the BRCA gene, she could have taken preventative measures.

Check Your Genes was formed to urge everyone to know his or her family history of breast and ovarian cancer and get tested if appropriate. Knowing the risks can help individuals make proactive decisions about their health. The Family Notification service is another step in empowering individuals to take charge of their health and learn their history.

For more about the free, secure Family Notification Service and Check Your Genes, please visit checkyourgenes.org.

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Betsy DeLage
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