Promoting Genetic Counseling in Culture-Sensitive Interventions


Prior to the intervention, only 50% of participants indicated that they were likely to make genetic counseling appointments. After the intervention, 63% were interested in making genetic counseling appointments within the next 6 months. Before the intervention, 70% of participants thought their families would want to know more about genetic counselling; after the intervention, 94% of participants indicated their family’s interest in genetic counselling. About 40% of women said they trusted who to call to book a genetic counseling appointment.

The efforts of this study were successful, the study was designed to motivate black women at genetic risk for breast cancer to seek genetic counseling. The study demonstrated changes in participants’ decisions about genetic counseling. The Henderson Group has designed a culturally specific, evidence-based, and cost-effective decision intervention. Overall, self-efficacy and decisions to pursue genetic counseling increased. This intervention should be studied further to identify ethnic women at genetic risk for breast cancer and help close the disparity gap. . Dr Henderson concluded: “Our future work will focus on cascade testing. Cascade testing is a systematic effort to test close blood relatives of individuals who test positive for a pathogenic variant (probands). All blood relatives of probands are at increased risk of having the variant.

Then Dr. Henderson developed his project: “Cascade testing relies on probands revealing the presence of an inherited genetic variant to at-risk family members. Given the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA), disclosure of genetic variant status is the responsibility of the known carrier as opposed to healthcare providers and disclosure may be associated with emotional distress and difficulties in transmitting genetic information. Unfortunately, the use of genetic testing by relatives to whom the genetic risk is disclosed by the carrier is only 15 to 57%. We will develop an intervention that reduces knowledge gaps, promotes shared decision-making and trust, and facilitates communication about genetic services, particularly with regard to sharing information with family networks, especially among black women with known pathogenic variants of breast cancer.


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