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Color, Ochsner Health System Collaborating on Population Health Pilot

NEW YORK – Color and Ochsner Health System are collaborating to launch a population health pilot program to incorporate genetic information into preventive care. 

Ochsner is a Lousiana-based academic, non-profit healthcare system that operates a program, called innovationOchsner, to identify patients at heightened risk for certain hereditary cancer and heart conditions, so these diseases can be prevented or detected early. Within this program, Ochsner is specifically interested in screening for risks for three conditions – hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome due to mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2; Lynch syndrome; and familial hypercholesterolemia, all three of which the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has deemed underassessed. 

In the partnership with Color, selected patients will receive access to the company's genetic testing and counseling. Patients can also discuss test results and how to integrate this information into their care with Ochsner's clinical teams. 

Ochsner and Color will enroll patients into the pilot digitally and store genetic test results into Epic electronic medical records. "Most consumers have access to home genetic screening tests but may not have the tools, resources and collaboration needed to take action should they receive questionable results," Richard Milani, Chief Clinical Transformation Officer at Ochsner, said in a statement.

The health system also has decision support tools and provider education programs that can help physicians integrate genetic information into care plans. Data collected in the pilot is Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliant, and Color will share identifiable genetic information only if individuals consent to it.

Color inked a similar partnership with NorthShore University HealthSystem earlier this year, called DNA10K, within which some 10,000 NorthShore patients will have access to genetic testing.