Approximately 4 genetic counselors currently live or work in Mississippi. More than 75% of Mississippi’s genetic counselors work full- or part-time in a clinical setting and provide genetic counseling services to patients. Several organizations including the University of Mississippi Medical Center and the Mississippi Department of Health support licensure for genetic counselors. Currently, in the United States, 33 states have licensure for genetic counseling, 2 are in rulemaking, and 12 states (including Mississippi) are making efforts toward licensure.
Genetic counselors are healthcare professionals who have a specialized graduate degree, academic training, and experience in both medical genetics and counseling.
Mississippi currently has no legal standard to determine who can represent themselves as genetic counselors.
Licensure would protect the citizens of Mississippi by ensuring that genetic counselors practicing in Mississippi:
Licensure would also create a means for Mississippi to regulate genetic counseling services.
Licensure will positively impact the Mississippi economy:
Medicare beneficiaries face significant barriers in accessing genetic counseling services as the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) do not currently recognize certified genetic counselors (CGC) as healthcare providers. This lack of recognition means CGCs cannot be reimbursed for providing services to Medicare beneficiaries which impedes patients’ access to genetic counseling. Evidence shows that CGCs improve the quality of patients’ healthcare and reduce the costs of genetic services.
For more information on how you can help, such as my messaging your local representative, click here: NSGC > POLICY > Federal Advocacy