02062019CM0116PLAINFIELD – Starting Jan. 1, 2020, Illinois residents’ genetic testing results will be protected, thanks to State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.

Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) championed House Bill 2189, which prohibits companies that provide direct-to-consumer commercial genetic testing such as ancestry.com and 23andMe, from sharing any test results with health or life insurance companies without the consumer’s consent.

“In the last couple of years, genetic testing has become easily accessible and affordable to consumers,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Will County residents should be able to rest assured that their personal health information will remain private as they make informed decisions to manage their health care.”

The number of people who have had their DNA analyzed with direct-to-consumer genetic genealogy tests more than doubled during 2017 and exceeded 12 million in 2018.

Last year, an estimated 1 in 25 American adults now have access to personal genetic data.

“We have the responsibility to ensure personal data is used ethically,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “As technology evolves it is imperative that laws advance with the needs of the people of our state.”

Representative Natalie Manley (D-Joliet) was the lead sponsor in the House.

House Bill 2189 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support. The measure was signed into law in July.

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