Genetics education for primary health care nurses
Hilary Burton Consultant in public health medicine, Public Health Genetics Unit, Public health medicine
Ann Shuttleworth Freelance health journalist
Current education provision is inadequate to deal with the knowledge front-line nurses need in genetics but, say Hilary Burton and Ann Shuttleworth, there is a national strategy underway to correct this situation
Advances in genetic science have increased the number of health interventions that can be undertaken with regard to genetic disorders. Initially concerned with prediction of risk for a few rare inherited diseases, genetics is now expanding into the domains of national screening programmes, predisposition testing and pharmacogenetics. This expansion means that a growing range of health professionals, including primary care nurses, need skills and knowledge in genetics in order to take on new roles.
Primary Health Care. 13, 4, 35-38. doi: 10.7748/phc2003.05.13.4.35.c211