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Impact of a pre-counseling educational video on the duration of cancer genetic counseling sessions

Binion, Savannah (2022) Impact of a pre-counseling educational video on the duration of cancer genetic counseling sessions. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Background: Genetic counseling and testing is considered a necessary component of clinical care for patients who may be at risk for hereditary cancer syndromes. Appropriate genetic counseling and testing can impact medical management for these patients. There is a documented shortage of genetic counselors, leading to long wait times and inequity in access to these services. Many approaches are being studied to address these issues of access to genetic counseling and testing. This study aims to investigate whether having patients watch an educational video prior to their cancer genetic counseling appointment decreases the duration of the appointment. The goal of this research is to identify ways to streamline genetic counseling sessions so that genetic counselors have more clinical availability.

Methods: An eight-minute-long educational video was created by the cancer genetic counselors and the Medical Director of the Cancer Genetics Program at UPMC Magee-Women’s Hospital. This video was sent to patients when they scheduled their appointment and they were encouraged to watch it prior to their appointment. Over the course of multiple years, the cancer genetic counselors documented whether or not their patients watched the educational video prior to the counseling session. They also documented the duration of each session, whether they had a student with them in the session, whether the session was virtual or in-person, and whether a pedigree was obtained during the session.

Results: Whether patients watched the educational video did not have a significant impact on the duration of the genetic counseling sessions. Sessions were significantly longer when there was a student present or when a pedigree was taken during the session. Telemedicine sessions were significantly shorter than in-person counseling sessions.

Conclusion: The results of this research showed that the educational video did not impact appointment duration. However, there were limitations of this study. Namely, patients may have watched the educational video months before their appointment which may have impacted their recall of the information. This study did show that telemedicine counseling sessions were significantly shorter than in-person sessions, which suggests that virtual appointments may be helpful in increasing the efficiency of genetic counseling clinics.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Binion, Savannahsab338@pitt.edusab338
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBourdius,
Committee MemberVento, Jodieventojm@pitt.eduVentojm
Committee MemberMai, Phuong
Committee MemberCarlson, Jenna Cjnc35@pitt.edujnc35
Date: 10 May 2022
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 12 April 2022
Approval Date: 10 May 2022
Submission Date: 27 April 2022
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 52
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Genetic Counseling
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Genetic counseling, Access to services, Service delivery model
Date Deposited: 10 May 2022 20:03
Last Modified: 10 May 2022 20:03


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