269900 Science Model of Consumer Behavior on Direct-to-consumer Genetic Testing

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Kee Chan, PhD , Department of Health Sciences, Boston University, Boston, MA
The launch of direct-to-consumer genetic testing services has been met with both the fascination of a new innovation leading to personalized medicine made readily available to consumers and great suspicion of a product that could potentially bring more medical, social and emotional harm. While genetic testing has paved the way for personalized medicine and appeals to futuristic concepts conjuring scenes from the movie Gattaca, its novelty has not yet been adopted into mainstream practice by consumers of health care products. This paper examines the potential consumer trends of direct-to-consumer genetic testing through the lens of the consumer market using the theory of diffusion of innovation and the Bass model to simulate consumer purchasing trends with respect to internal and external influences leading to adoption or resistance to direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing. In light of the issue of whether health care providers or consumers should have access to genetic testing for the purposes of making health-related decisions, this study will explore simulated hypothetical scenarios for direct-to-consumer genetic testing. Our paper will examine the following hypotheses and explore the justifications for these observations based on the Bass model: (1) Personalized genomic testing will continue and increase as Sigmoidal curve as direct-to-consumer platform, (2) Personalized genomic testing will continue but plateau at “time” point, or (3) Personalized genomic testing will continue a linear curve. This study will provide model on how DTC genetic testing can project consumer behavior, expectations and motivations towards purchasing the service and consequently their reaction to their results.

Learning Areas:
Public health biology
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Assess the potential consumer market for direct-to-consumer genetic testing. Evaluate the direct-to-consumer genetic testing trends.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I research, conduct the analysis and wrote the paper.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.