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Free testing soon for Australian women with a family history of breast and ovarian cancer

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Free genetic testing will soon be available in Australia for women with a family history of breast and ovarian cancer.

The tests, which are used to determine whether a women is at risk of developing the diseases, will be listed on the Medicare Benefits Schedule from November 1.

Before now the test cost between $600 to $2000 when tested by a private specialist.

Melody Caramins from the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia told the ABC, making the BRCA 1 and 2 genetic test free “is a huge milestone and will significantly improve the lives of Australian”.

In 2017, it is estimated that 17,586 women will be diagnosed with new cases of breast cancer in Australia, and 3,087 females will die from the disease.

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