JScreen, a national nonprofit public-health initiative dedicated to preventing genetic diseases, will hold Jewish Genetic Screening Awareness Week (JGSAW) from Feb. 1 to Feb. 5.

Started last year with organizational partners across the country, it will offer timely information and resources, as well as several online events, to help raise awareness about the importance of screening for genetic diseases.

JScreen makes testing for genetic diseases simple by providing an easy-to-use at-home saliva test that gives couples an understanding of their genetic makeup and risks relating to the health of prospective children. If a person or couple’s risk is shown to be elevated, genetic counselors privately address their results by phone or video teleconference and provide them with options to help them plan for the health of their future children.

“Our families’ health is top of mind as we navigate this challenging time. It is reassuring to know that there is a simple, at-home spit test to help couples plan for the health of their future families,” said Karen Arnovitz Grinzaid, executive director of JScreen. “This week will showcase valuable resources to help raise awareness and will hopefully lead more people to #getJScreened.”

Jewish Genetic Screening Awareness Week (JGSAW) will be held from Feb. 1 to Feb. 5, 2021. Credit: Courtesy.

“This week is a call to action for genetic screening,” said State Rep. Mike Wilensky of Georgia, who introduced the resolution declaring Jewish Genetic Screening Awareness Week. “We are thrilled to highlight JScreen’s honorable efforts to help people take charge of their own health and that of their children. Knowledge truly is power.”

Virtual events throughout the week include:

Feb. 2: Facebook Live on Smashing the Glass, noon EST; Yeshiva University Honors Program Lecture, 5:45 p.m. EST

Feb. 3: Jewish Federation of Delaware Lecture, 7 p.m. EST

Feb. 4: Jewish Journal of LA Webinar, 3 p.m. EST   

For more information, visit www.jscreen.org

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