Bill on Genetic Information Privacy Act Passed by California Senate

A bill (SB-980) that secures the Genetic Information Privacy Act was passed by the California Senate. At the moment, California Governor Gavin Newsom just has to affix his signature to the bill.

The Genetic Information Privacy Act is going to add new prerequisites for businesses that offer direct-to-customer genetic tests to take care of consumer privacy and secure personal and genetic data.

At present, direct-to-client genetic testing services are for the most part not controlled. There is a dilemma that the strategies of organizations offering these services can probably expose sensitive genetic information and that third parties could possibly exploit the make use of genetic information for dubious purposes, for example, mass surveillance, tracking people without having authorization, or divulge genetic data contributing to discrimination against selected persons. Contrary to numerous elements of “protected health information”, genomic information is constant and gets little change throughout the lifetime of somebody, therefore any sharing of genetic data may have life-long effects for the man or woman concerned.

The Genetic Information Privacy Act is applicable to any organization that sells, markets, interprets or offers genetic testing services that are begun directly by customers. The Act does not apply to licensed vendors who diagnose or treat a medical ailment.

The Act has a few privacy and data security terms. All individuals should be given with a notice with regards to the company’s policies and operations for the gathering, use, retention, and sharing of personally identifiable genetic information.

Express authorization should be received from clients before the collection, usage, or disclosure of a customer’s genetic data, and different express permission ought to be secured for particular defined activities, for instance, any transmission of genetic info to a third party and promotion based on a client’s genetic information. When a customer opts to revoke their authorization at any time, any biological samples presented need to be destroyed within 30 days of the withdrawal, reversal being received.

Any business required to abide by the Genetic Information Privacy Act should implement realistic security measures, procedures, and tactics to make certain that a client’s genetic information is secured against unauthorized access, use, alteration, exposure, and destruction.

Policies and procedures ought to be formulated and enforced to make it possible for a customer to access their genetic info, have their account and genetic data removed, and their sample destroyed. Genetic data disclosures to a number of entities, such as those that market health and life insurance and employers are not authorized, subject to given exemptions. Organizations are furthermore banned from discriminating against a client for using the rights granted to them by the Genetic Information Privacy Act.

Any medical facts governed by the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act is not covered, just as any protected health information (PHI) obtained, kept, used, or exposed by HIPAA-covered entities or their business associates, according to the HIPAA and the HITECH Act.

Any entity subject to the Genetic Information Privacy Act identified to have violated any of its conditions will be asked to pay civil monetary penalties.

About the Author

Elizabeth Hernandez
Elizabeth Hernandez is the editor of HIPAA News. Elizabeth is an experienced journalist who has worked in the healthcare sector for several years. Her expertise is not limited to general healthcare reporting but extends to specialized areas of healthcare compliance and HIPAA compliance. Elizabeth's knowledge in these areas has made her a reliable source for information on the complexities of healthcare regulations. Elizabeth's contribution to the field extends to helping readers understand the importance of patient privacy and secure handling of health information. Elizabeth holds a postgraduate degree in journalism. You can follow Elizabeth on twitter at