From Genetic Counselling, Ethics, Nursing, Society

An evolution from genetic counselling to genomic counselling

Chris and Anna co-authored this opinion piece for the EJMG special issue, 'Evidenced-Based Genetic Counselling', which they also co-edited

An evolution from genetic counselling to genomic counselling


1st May 2019


The highly specialist, hub and spoke model of Clinical Genetics, as described by the Royal College of Physicians in the UK in 1991, is under the spotlight. Whilst this has underpinned the successful delivery of genetics services historically, it may not be able to deliver genomic healthcare on its own, at scale, simply because genomic testing is no longer contained – any clinician can now order a genomic test, irrespective of their discipline. The professional group of genomic counsellors are now questioning whether there is need for an evolution of their roles. Do we persist in being attached to past models, or do we embrace new models of care and take a direct role in ‘mainstreaming’ the skills of genomic counselling?. We conclude the genomic counsellor profession and the translated skills of genomic counselling have much to offer in shaping the future of medicine as genomic technologies become part of routine clinical practice.

Related Link:


Patch C, Middleton A (2019) An evolution from genetic counselling to genomic counselling. European Journal of Medical Genetics, vol. 62, issue 5, pp 288-289, May

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