Doctor with patient

Let’s talk about……. Genomic Testing

Discussing genomic testing with patients can pose many challenges, but our new film series will help you learn tips and techniques from the experts

‘Let’s Talk About… Genomic Testing’ is a new series of six films that has been developed to cover the key points healthcare professionals need to consider when discussing genomic testing with patients and their families.

Produced in collaboration with genetic counsellor Amanda Pichini, the films feature interviews with experts who discuss a range of topics including the type of results that can be returned and the impact on whole families rather than individuals. The films aim to serve as an introduction for those who are new to, or less familiar with, the testing process.

A range of talking points

The six films are available now on our Vimeo channel and will soon be available on our Youtube channel. They cover:

Possible results – Our experts explore the types of results that can be returned from genomic testing, how long they could take to come through, and what they might mean.

Communication strategies – In this film we look at some of the communication strategies that our experts have found particularly useful in their experience of discussing genomic testing with patients and families.

Incidental findingsIncidental findings are results that may be returned in addition to those relating to the original clinical question being asked. Our experts explain that these results can often be particularly difficult for patients as they are more unexpected, and discuss their experience of managing this situation.

The impact on families – In this film we explore the fact that genomic testing, by its nature, can often impact whole families rather than just individuals; and consider the importance of preparing patients and families for this possibility

Uncertainty – Uncertainty is simply a reality of dealing with genomics and genomic testing, and our experts explore the ways in which uncertainty might present itself and how they might support their patients in considering, accepting, and managing such uncertainty.

Variants of uncertain significanceVariants of uncertain significance (VUSs) are those genetic changes, identified through genomic testing, where experts are not yet sure of the implications. Our experts discuss how VUSs can be handled, and how things might change in the future.

More specialist learning

If these films have sparked your interest in genomic testing and you would like to learn more, there is a range of courses, resources, and information available via our website. You can also find a number of related short courses on the Genomics in the NHS e-learning hub, free to access for NHS staff and those within UK universities.