The NIPT is a blood test and a screening test. NIPT stands for Non-Invasive Prenatal Test and here we look whether there are abnormalities found in the blood of the baby. From week 11 of the pregnancy you can have this test performed, this is entirely up to the parent (s) whether they want it or not. This test is not mandatory. In this blog we will tell you more about NIPT, the results and how it is regulated by the health insurance.
What is NIPT?
NIPT is the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test and falls under a screening test. Here, blood is taken from the mom's arm. In the blood there is also DNA from the placenta, and this DNA almost completely matches that of the baby. From this test they can find out if an abnormality such as Down, Edwards, or Patau syndrome is present. You can have this test done from week 11 of the pregnancy and the test gives a reliable result up to almost 100%. And by that we mean that sometimes there is only an abnormality in the placenta and not in the baby. The test is not mandatory, you may decide as a parent(s) whether you want to have the test done (The Obstetrician, s.d.).
You will receive the results after about 10-15 working days from the obstetrician or gynecologist (National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, s.d.). Does the result show no abnormalities? Then the chances are very small that the baby has an abnormality. Is the result abnormal? Then it is the other way around, then the chance is very high that the baby has an abnormality. As a follow-up examination, a amniocentesis or chorionic villus testing performed, these tests do provide certainty for the 100%. The disadvantage of these two tests is that there is a risk of miscarriage (The Obstetrician, s.d.).
Are you insured?
Unfortunately you are not fully insured for the test. The insurance does cover the intake interview with the midwife and gynecologist, but the NIPT test is at your own expense. The cost of the test is €175 (National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, s.d.). There is an exception for women who have a known increased risk of an abnormality. For example, if the woman was previously pregnant with a child with Down's, Edwards' or Patau's syndrome. Only then will the NIPT test be reimbursed by the health insurance company (De Verloskundige, z.d.).
As mentioned above, it is entirely up to the parents themselves they want to have the NIPT performed. There is no right or wrong, but we can understand that you want to be sure that your baby is healthy. Therefore we think it is wise to have the test done. But be free to make your own choice and do what feels right, only you can determine that.
The Midwife. (s.d.). NIPT. Accessed November 26, 2021, from https://deverloskundige.nl/zwangerschap/subtekstpagina/40/nipt/
National Institute of Public Health and the Environment. (s.d.). The NIPT | Prenatal and neonatal screenings. Accessed November 26, 2021, from https://www.pns.nl/nipt