NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Genetic counselors in the cancer field experienced changes to their practice soon after a Supreme Court ruling that effectively expanded the types of genetic tests available for assessing individuals’ risk of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC), results from a recently published survey suggest.
In the Journal of Genetic Counseling last week, researchers from NextGxDx (now Concert Genetics), Geisinger Health System, and elsewhere presented findings from a survey performed in November 2013, which polled 152 genetic counselors about changes in genetic testing and counseling practices following the US Supreme Court decision in the Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad case earlier that year.
Results of the survey suggest changes in the HBOC genetic testing landscape — which have occurred since related counseling guidelines were established by the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) in late 2012 — are impacting how genetic counselors present such tests to patients. For example, the team saw hints that genetic counselors provide more information about test uncertainty to patients, sometimes at the expense of in-depth information on any one test, while spending more time overall with each patient.
“This study shows that cancer genetic counselors are adapting quickly to genetic testing