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Genetic counselling for psychiatric disorders: accounts of psychiatric health professionals in the United Kingdom

Jenkins, Sian and Arribas-Ayllon, Michael ORCID: 2016. Genetic counselling for psychiatric disorders: accounts of psychiatric health professionals in the United Kingdom. Journal of Genetic Counseling 25 (6) , pp. 1243-1255. 10.1007/s10897-016-9990-5

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Genetic counselling is not routinely offered for psychiatric disorders in the United Kingdom through NHS regional clinical genetics departments. However, recent genomic advances, confirming a genetic contribution to mental illness, are anticipated to increase demand for psychiatric genetic counselling. This is the first study of its kind to employ qualitative methods of research to explore accounts of psychiatric health professionals regarding the prospects for genetic counselling services within clinical psychiatry in the UK. Data were collected from 32 questionnaire participants, and 9 subsequent interviewees. Data analysis revealed that although participants had not encountered patients explicitly demanding psychiatric genetic counselling, psychiatric health professionals believe that such a service would be useful and desirable. Genomic advances may have significant implications for genetic counselling in clinical psychiatry even if these discoveries do not lead to genetic testing. Psychiatric health professionals describe clinical genetics as a skilled profession capable of combining complex risk communication with much needed psychosocial support. However, participants noted barriers to the implementation of psychiatric genetic counselling services including, but not limited to, the complexities of uncertainty in psychiatric diagnoses, patient engagement and ethical concerns regarding limited capacity.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: Springer
ISSN: 1059-7700
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 9 May 2016
Date of Acceptance: 28 April 2016
Last Modified: 03 May 2023 20:40

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