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Since October 2020 when the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists updated its prenatal screening guidelines to recommend that all pregnant women should have access to non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT), virtually all major health plans have removed prior authorization (PA) requirements, if they had one to begin with, – except UnitedHealthCare.


Preauthorization requirements force OB/GYNs and other providers to obtain approval for prenatal genetic testing. PA policies claim to ensure that genetic testing is performed for appropriate clinical indications but in reality, these policies:


  • Impose unnecessary barriers to timely care for pregnant women

  • Add additional burdens on physicians and their staff, negatively impacting their patients’ access to genetic testing

  • Restrict the scope of practice of providers who are fully qualified to recommend specific prenatal tests, such as NIPT, to patients


In fact, in a 2020 prior authorization physician survey conducted by the American Medical Association:


  • 94% of physicians stated that PA requirements have delayed their patients’ access to necessary care

  • 79% of physicians stated that issues related to PA requirements process have led patients to abandon their recommended course of treatment

  • 30% of physicians stated that PA requirements have led to a serious adverse event for a patient in their care.

It’s clear: PA requirements prevent women from accessing safe, accurate prenatal care, such as NIPT. UnitedHealthcare must remove these PA requirements around NIPT for all pregnant women.

Founded by mothers for other mothers, Stand Up for APA’s mission is to ensure that all women in the United States are treated equitably by receiving the most accurate, non-invasive prenatal genetic screening information available about the health of their baby – no matter what. We aim to remove all barriers that prevent many pregnant women from being offered the most accurate prenatal screening information about their baby available – and that includes preauthorization requirements.