Findings from a community education needs assessment to facilitate the integration of genomic medicine into primary care.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Vincent C. Henrich, Professor (Creator)
Joseph Telfair, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: Purpose: To assess the lay public's knowledge of, and beliefs about, genetics and genetic testing to create an educational initiative that promotes acceptance and utilization of genomic medicine in primary health care. Methods: A telephone survey of English-speaking adults in Guilford County, North Carolina was conducted in 2006 to identify community members' educational needs regarding genetics and genetic testing. Results: Most respondents recognized the connection between family history and disease risk. A majority did not appear to know about: (1) basic principles of inheritance, (2) laws prohibiting genetic discrimination, and (3) the availability and limitations of genetic tests. About 25% thought that they could not reduce their risk if they have a genetic predisposition for disease. Knowledge level was affected by education, experience, age, and race. Conclusion: If primary care providers use family history as a risk assessment tool, community education programs must address (1) the collection of family health history, (2) legislation regarding genetic nondiscrimination, (3) benefits and limitations of existing genetic tests, and (4) genetic determinism. Programs emphasizing practical, “how to” information can be targeted to individuals likely to collect family history information and address misperceptions about discrimination, testing, and determinism.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2010
educational needs assessment, educational plan, public knowledge, community survey, genomic medicine, physician education, family history

Email this document to