McLeod does not use a person’s genetic information in making employment decisions such as hiring, firing, job assignments, or any other terms of employment. GINA provides additional underwriting protections, prohibits requesting, requiring, or purchasing genetic testing, and restricts the collection of genetic information.
There are, however, a few exceptions to this rule, such as when McLeod obtains genetic information inadvertently or pursuant to the FMLA; receives voluntary health or genetic services that an employer offers; or acquires genetic information from sources that are “commercially and publicly available,” like newspapers, books, and public websites.
McLeod keeps any genetic information we do acquire confidentially, subject to certain very narrow exceptions.
GINA prohibits McLeod from collecting genetic information (including family medical history) prior to or in connection with benefit enrollment; or at any time for underwriting purposes.
McLeod may use a Health Risk Assessment (HRA) that requests family medical history, if it is requested to be completed after and unrelated to benefit enrollment and if there is no premium reduction or any other reward for completing the HRA. McLeod may offer a premium discount or other reward for completion of an HRA that does not request family medical history or other genetic information, such as information about any genetic tests the individual has undergone. Under GINA McLeod may also reward:
- Participation in an annual physical examination with a physician (or other health care professional) who is providing health care services to the individual, even if the physician may ask for family medical history as part of the examination;
- More favorable cost-sharing for preventive services, including genetic screening; and
- Participation in certain disease management or prevention programs. The incentives to participate in such programs must also be available to individuals who qualify for the program but have not volunteered family medical history information through an HRA.
A person who believes than McLeod has violated GINA may file a charge of discrimination with the EEOC within 180 days of the alleged violation, or within 300 days if a state or local agency enforces a law that prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of the acquisition or use of genetic information.