Primary care physicians' utilization and perceptions of genetics services

Susan J. Hayflick, M. Patrice Eiff, Leslie Carpenter, Judy Steinberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

116 Scopus citations


Purpose: To document primary care physicians' utilization and perceptions of genetics services. Methods: A randomized survey of physicians in the Pacific Northwest. Results: The greatest factor prompting a genetics referral was the patient's interest in the evaluation, and the most common reason not to obtain a consultation was the perception that it was of no benefit to the patient. Genetics consultation was rarely sought for a family history of cancer or for deafness, polycystic kidney disease, or congenital heart disease. Even when uncertain about relative risk, physicians usually counseled a patient themselves rather than referring to a specialist. Conclusion: Primary care physicians need more education about the genetic component of many diseases to provide directly and to refer appropriately for genetics services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-18
Number of pages6
JournalGenetics in Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1998


  • Attitudes
  • Genetics services
  • Perceptions
  • Primary care
  • Utilization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)


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