Positive experiences of healthcare professionals with a mainstreaming approach of germline genetic testing for women with ovarian cancer.


According to current guidelines, all women with epithelial ovarian cancer are eligible for genetic testing for BRCA germline pathogenic variants. Unfortunately, not all affected women are tested. We evaluated the acceptability and feasibility for non-genetic healthcare professionals to incorporate germline genetic testing into their daily practice. We developed and implemented a mainstreaming pathway, including a training module, in collaboration with various healthcare professionals and patient organizations. Healthcare professionals from 4 different hospitals were invited to participate. After completing the training module, gynecologic oncologists, gynecologists with a subspecialty training in oncology, and nurse specialists discussed and ordered genetic testing themselves. They received a questionnaire before completing the training module and 6 months after working according to the new pathway. We assessed healthcare professionals' attitudes, perceived knowledge, and self-efficacy, along with the feasibility of this new mainstream workflow in clinical practice, and evaluated the use and content of the training module. The participation rate for completing the training module was 90% (N = 19/21). At baseline and after 6 months, healthcare professionals had a positive attitude, high perceived knowledge and high self-efficacy toward discussing and ordering genetic testing. Knowledge had increased significantly after 6 months. The training module was rated with an average of 8.1 out of 10 and was considered useful. The majority of healthcare professionals (9/15) was able to discuss a genetic test in five to 10 min. After completion of a training module, non-genetic healthcare professionals feel motivated and competent to discuss and order genetic testing themselves.

More about this publication

Familial cancer
  • Volume 21
  • Issue nr. 3
  • Pages 295-304
  • Publication date 01-07-2022

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