|Genetics and Prevention Time Tool Launch Page|
GENETIC TESTING TIME TOOL
A Resource from the American College of Preventive Medicine
It has long been recognized that genes hold the key to personalized medical care -- tailoring screening, treatment and prevention strategies to individual genetic profiles. The goal is care that is more specific and more efficient with fewer adverse effects. The technology that enabled the mapping of the human genome can now be used to scan these genes for variants associated with virtually any disease process. The result is a new wave of genetic tests, with over 1500 new tests developed in just the last few years. The number will continue to grow as new variants are identified and associated with disease in genome wide association studies (GWAS).
The new tests are, however, a far cry from traditional genetic tests for single gene disorders and familial cancer syndromes that have long played a vital role in primary and specialist care. Many questions remain about their value. There is little oversight in their development, and virtually no evidence of clinical utility. The companies that develop them often market them directly to consumers. Some will be proven useful in clinical practice; many will not. Only until the appropriate research is completed will we know.
Primary care clinicians have a key responsibility in helping patients understand the pros and cons of genetic testing. Genetic tests are unlike other medical tests in important ways – ethical, social, emotional, legal aspects, and the statistics involved. And, with the new tests present, dealing with false claims and little, if any, supporting evidence. Genetic testing will play an increasingly important role in medical care as each new test that is proven is incorporated into standard practice. This is especially true in oncology and cardiovascular medicine. Patients will be asking their primary care doctors about all of these tests.
Clinicians often report inadequate training in genetic testing, and a lack of confidence in counseling patients on related issues. Additional education and guidance is needed. The Genetic Testing Time Tool developed by the American College of Preventive Medicine is an innovative educational tool designed to assist physicians in discussions about genetic testing. The tool includes a practical approach for a brief visit, a robust clinical reference document addressing the important issues, useful tools and resources, and a patient handout.
To earn CME credit for this educational activity:
In the interest of providing an educational experience free of commercial bias, and as the accredited provider of CME for this activity, the American College of Preventive Medicine was responsible for decisions regarding educational content and allocation of funds. All individuals involved in the planning, development, and delivery of educational activities are required to sign a conflict of interest statement in which they disclose any relevant financial interests or other affiliations with industry or other associations which may have direct and substantial interest in the subject matter of the CME activity. Such disclosure allows program participants to better evaluate the objectivity of the information presented in the program.
FOR CME EXAM AND EVALUATION
American College of Preventive Medicine. All Rights Reserved.