What is a Genetic Counselor?

It’s a question every single genetic counselor has heard many times. It can be exhausting to explain over and over again, a constant justification for what you work so hard at every day. At a certain point, I started thinking. What IS a genetic counselor?

I’ve had my stock responses, from the literal definition ‘I counsel people about genetics…’ to the more mysterious ‘I’m like a genetic investigator’. But after I came to work at Genetic Support Foundation (GSF), I found myself giving that question more thought.

We as genetic counselors want the best for our patients. That’s why we do what we do. But in today’s world of lightning fast test developments, constantly evolving medical guidelines, and increasingly intense marketing for genetic tests, it can be difficult to stay on top of everything.

GSF was created with the mission to ‘improve the quality of healthcare by providing up-to-date, objective genetic information to patients, providers, and healthcare organizations’. Part of how we would like to do that is by re-introducing our blog – Gene Cuisine: Satisfying Your Appetite for Genetic News and Information. We hope this blog will be a hub for interesting genetics-related articles and studies, as well as an area for posts relating to evolving topics in genetics. There are, and will likely continue to be, a number of challenges as the field of genetics expands. It is important to have a platform where we can discuss these issues, and how to navigate them while keeping the overall goal of quality patient care in mind.

Are there specific topics that you feel are not being addressed in the genetics community that are important? Do you have a topic that you would be interested writing a guest blog about? We’d love to hear from you!