Planning a Jewish Wedding – Before You Say ‘I Do’ – Schedule a Blood Test
PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — When planning a wedding, couples often make a checklist that includes choosing a rabbi or other officiant, selecting a date, deciding on a location, menu, music, flowers, photographer, rings, a dress, and compiling a guest list. According to the Victor Center for the Prevention of Jewish Genetic Diseases at Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, before they break the glass, a couple with at least one Jewish partner should also consider scheduling a blood test, since 1 in 5 Jews with ancestors from Eastern and Central Europe are at risk for being a carrier for at least one of 19 identified Jewish genetic diseases. The importance of getting tested at the time of the wedding is because the date of the wedding is a known factor, but the date of conception is often not planned or known in advance. Timely screening enables the couple, even if they are both carriers, the ability to consult with a genetic counselor about their options for having biological children free of Jewish genetic diseases.
Before screening, prospective parents had no way of knowing whether they were carriers of a genetic disease that could threaten the health and life of their children, since their own health was unaffected – until it was too late and they had an affected child. For individuals who have a Jewish ancestor from countries such as Poland, Russia, Germany, Austria, and Lithuania, they have a greater risk of being a carrier for any of the 19 different genetic diseases, which strike in childhood, have no cure, and may lead to early death. A simple blood test is all that is necessary for screening for the entire Victor Center Jewish genetic disease panel of 19, and individuals, including interfaith couples, should be screened prior to each pregnancy, since with advances in testing, that list is constantly being expanded.
Screenings for genetic diseases may be covered by insurance plans, and the cost has been reduced by the Victor Center to $600 for the underinsured or uninsured. What can be a more meaningful wedding gift for the joyous couple, than a gift of helping to ensure healthy children?
To learn more about proper screening for Jewish Genetic Diseases, visit the Victor Center Web site at www.victorcenters.org or call 877-401-1093.
Media Contact: Cathy Callegari – 212-579-1370 or firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Victor Center for the Prevention of Jewish Genetic Diseases