A group of people all with their hands raised.

Genomics awareness survey: the results…

Your answers to our survey, conducted this summer, will inform the development of our educational opportunities, including next year’s #GenomicsConversation week of action

The GEP would like to say a big thank you to everyone who took the time to respond to our genomics awareness survey. Conducted earlier this year, the survey’s purpose was to assist us in better understanding how much NHS nurses, midwives and health visitors feel they know about genomics and its influence on patient treatment and care. More than 300 NHS staff completed the survey, and the findings have given us a better understanding of how the programme can best support nurses, midwives, and other NHS professionals, too.

What you told us

Overall, your responses to the survey showed us that a good majority of you don’t feel that you have a ‘good understanding of genomics’. Of those who expressed this view:

  • the most common reason you gave was that it is not relevant to your role, closely followed by lack of time to learn something new;
  • your biggest barrier to learning more about genomics is time, followed by a perceived lack of relevance to your specific role, and difficulty;
  • you selected: ‘If I had more study/CPD time’, ‘If it became part of my role’ and ‘If my line manager asked me to/part of my CPD’ as the most compelling reasons to learn more;
  • many of you felt that you had not come across genomics in your current role; and
  • a large proportion of you answered ‘don’t know’ or ‘do not see genomics as part of my future career plans’ when asked if you saw genomics as part of your future.

A full report of all the results is available to download.

What’s next?

Our work in the Genomics Education Programme over the past six years has shown us the incredible value of nurses and midwives when it comes to delivering the benefits of genomics to patients. We know that all nurses and midwives have a part to play; and the results of the survey have shown us the need for more educational opportunities and awareness-raising in this area.

The results and your feedback are already being used to shape the next #GenomicsConversation week of action, which is specifically aimed at the nursing and midwifery workforce. Starting on Monday 22 March 2021, our next week of action will aim to address the key points gathered from the feedback, such as that genomics is perceived as too technical and not relevant, and that you are short of time to learn more about it. Throughout the week we’ll be providing resources and activities for a digestible introduction to what genomics is and how it is relevant in practice today – while also looking to the future.

Planning is well under way, and we’ll be bringing you the usual assortment of online activities, including podcasts and Twitterchats, as well as signposting to relevant resources. If you would like to get involved and spread the word about genomics with your colleagues, please get in touch!

In the meantime, why not follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates?