As non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) becomes widely adopted, understanding the knowledge base of practicing obstetricians, possible gaps in understanding, and their specific practice models will help develop strategies and best practices for both clinician and patient education. To learn more about physicians' attitudes toward—and knowledge about—NIPT, a survey was conducted with obstetricians in the United States.METHODS:
The questionnaire was designed to obtain the level of knowledge and attitudes of OBGYNs towards screening options for aneuploidy, with a focus on NIPT. The survey began with six appraisal questions to determine the practice specialty and setting, familiarity with NIPT, obstetric volume, and percentage of patients with Medicaid. The subsequent 12 survey questions were designed to solicit current practices regarding aneuploidy screening as well as opinions, experiences, and implications of NIPT.RESULTS:
Survey respondents identified NIPT as clinically superior to traditional screening methods and indicated that they would like ACOG to formally recommend NIPT for any pregnant woman. Insurance was noted as the biggest barrier, and over 81% of surveyed providers would utilize NIPT as a first line screening test if insurance offered full coverage. The majority of providers who have implemented NIPT into clinical practice indicate improved patient care. While most providers demonstrated accurate understanding of the technology and its application, nearly 15% describe NIPT as diagnostic for fetal aneuploidy.CONCLUSION:
The results of the survey suggest that there is a desire for changes to current practice guidelines and insurance coverage. Additionally, provider education remains paramount.