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Program Standards and Quality Assurance


The goal of the Program Standards and Quality Assurance (PSQA) Branch is to assure the citizens of California that the provision of genetic counseling and genetic diagnostic services meet an accepted standard of care. 

Patients who have a 'screen positive' test result through the California Prenatal Screening Program are eligible for certain services at State-approved Prenatal Diagnosis Centers.  With the referral to a State-approved Prenatal Diagnosis Center, the patient will see a California Licensed Genetic Counselor and, depending on the 'screen positive' test result, may be authorized for ultrasound, cfDNA testing for certain chromosome abnormalities, or diagnostic procedures such as amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling (CVS).  Laboratory analysis from having a CVS would be for chromosome analysis (karyotype).  Laboratory analysis from having an amniocentesis may be for chromosome analysis (karyotype) and/or amniotic fluid biochemistry.  For some patients with certain ultrasound findings that have amniocentesis, a microarray may be authorized instead of a karyotype.  

The (PSQA) Branch performs the following tasks to support its goal:

  • Genetic Counselor Licensure
  • Development of Standards for Genetics' personnel and facilities
  • Approval of Prenatal Diagnosis Centers and their personnel, including clinical geneticists, genetic counselors, consultative sonologists, amniocentesis practitioners and chorionic villus sampling (CVS) practitioners
  • Monitoring compliance with the Standards by making site visits, completing a records' review and then sending corrective action reports

    Please send any comments and questions to:
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