SSQ Insurance announced this week that it is partnering with BiogeniQ to offer some of its group insurance customers suffering from depression with pharmacogenomics testing, which may lead to more effective treatment.

Some of SSQ’s insured members on disability leave for depression will be offered a genetic test kit from BiogeniQ to collect a small sample or saliva for analysis. The goal of pharmacogenetics testing is to determine which drug treatment is best suited for the individual.

“Thanks to our agreement with BiogeniQ, SSQ Insurance customers will be able to consider a treatment that is better suited to their situation and possibly a faster return to a fully active life,” says Éric Trudel, senior vice president of strategy and product management, SSQ. “By the same token, this practice could ultimately help control the cost of group insurance plans for policyholders,” he adds.

Personalized treatment

“Studies show that personalized treatment based on pharmacogenomic analyses serves to shorten the duration of disability due to depression and increase the chances of remission. We are enthusiastic about our partnership with SSQ Insurance to make this avant-garde service accessible and make a difference in the lives of many insureds,” says BiogeniQ founder Étienne Crevier.

Initially, SSQ will provide access to BiogeniQ’s testing services to some clients and then possibly extend this offer to the rest of its clientele afterward. The insurer is also evaluating the potential use of pharmacogenomics testing for other diseases.

To learn more on this subject, read this article, Pharmacogenetics may help depressed patients get better medication faster.