SurveyMonkey and Visa introduce genetic testing scheme


Instacart, SurveyMonkey and Visa are among a number of organisations in the US that have signed up to a new benefits scheme giving employees access to genetic testing for breast and ovarian cancer risk.

The initiative, provided by Color, offers staff, and in some cases spouses or partners, the option of a genetic test at a 50-100% subsidised rate. The test looks at 19 genes, including BRCA1 and BRCA2, mutations of which have been linked to increased risk of ovarian and breast cancer.

The initiative also provides genetic counselling, as well as onsite educational programmes with certified genetic counsellors.

The scheme aims to give employees the option to learn about their genetic risk of cancer in a responsible and well-supported way.

Some 18 US employers have taken a Breast Cancer Pledge and opted to introduce the Color Benefits Programme. These include Addepar, Andreessen Horowitz, AngelList, CloudPhysics, Gainsight, Glow, Innovation Endeavors, Instacart, Medium, Sacramento Kings, Slack, Social Capital, Stripe, SurveyMonkey, Visa and Y Combinator.

Apoorva Mehta, chief executive officer of grocery delivery firm Instacart, said: “We took the Breast Cancer Pledge because we care deeply about the health of our employees and want them to have access to this important test.”

Scott Moak, executive director of the Sacramento Kings basketball team’s charitable arm The Sacramento Kings Foundation, added: “This was a no-brainer for us. The health and wellbeing of our staff is of utmost importance, so we took the step to give our employees the opportunity and option to get tested. This [programme] is in line with our organisation’s values and we hope all other teams will consider joining us.”