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Virginia Bill Regarding Genetic Counseling (SB 330)

This law was last updated on Oct 12, 2016

This law is Anti–Choice




Va. Code Ann. § 54.1.2957.18-21




Jan 6, 2014


Primary Sponsors: 1
Total Sponsors: 1


Conscience and Refusal Clauses, Religious Freedom

Full Bill Text

SB 330 defines “genetic counseling” and establishes regulations and licensing requirements for the practice.

The law defines genetic counselor to mean “a person licensed by the Board to engage in the practice of genetic counseling.”

The law further defines the practice of genetic counseling to mean:

“the provision of services by an individual who qualifies for a license under this chapter, including (i) obtaining and evaluating individual and family medical histories to assess the risk of genetic medical conditions and diseases in a patient, his offspring, and other family members; (ii) discussing the features, history, diagnosis, environmental factors, and risk management of genetic medical conditions and diseases; (iii) ordering genetic laboratory tests and other diagnostic studies necessary for genetic assessment; (iv) integrating the results with personal and family medical history to assess and communicate risk factors for genetic medical conditions and diseases; (v) evaluating the patient’s and family’s responses to the medical condition or risk of recurrence and providing client-centered counseling and anticipatory guidance; (vi) identifying and utilizing community resources that provide medical, educational, financial, and psychosocial support and advocacy; and (vii) providing written documentation of medical, genetic, and counseling information for families and health care professionals.”

Conscience Clause

The law permits individuals to refuse to participate in any genetic counseling that conflicts with their “deeply-held moral or religious beliefs.” To avoid disciplinary action, the genetic counselor must inform the patient that he/she will not participate in any counseling and offer to provide a referral.


Companion to HB 612.


Primary Sponsor