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Factors influencing organizational adoption and implementation of clinical genetic services.

Hamilton AB, Oishi S, Yano EM, Gammage CE, Marshall NJ, Scheuner MT. Factors influencing organizational adoption and implementation of clinical genetic services. Genetics in Medicine : Official Journal of The American College of Medical Genetics. 2014 Mar 1; 16(3):238-45.

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PURPOSE: We sought to identify characteristics of genetic services that facilitate or hinder adoption. METHODS: We conducted semi-structured key informant interviews in five clinical specialties (primary care, medical oncology, neurology, cardiology, pathology/laboratory medicine) within 13 Veterans Administration facilities. RESULTS: Genetic services (defined as genetic testing and consultation) were not typically characterized by informants (n = 64) as advantageous for their facilities or their patients; compatible with organizational norms of low cost and high clinical impact; or applicable to patient populations or norms of clinical care. Furthermore, genetic services had not been systematically adopted in most facilities because of their complexity: knowledge of and expertise on genetic testing was limited, and organizational barriers to utilization of genetic services were formidable. The few facilities that had some success with implementation of genetic services had knowledgeable clinicians interested in developing services and organizational-level facilitators such as accessible genetic test-ordering processes. CONCLUSION: Adoption and implementation of genetic services will require a multilevel effort that includes education of providers and administrators, opportunities for observing the benefits of genetic medicine, strategies for reducing the complexity of genomic medicine, expanded strategies for accessing genetics expertise and streamlining utilization, and resources dedicated to assessing the value of genetic information for the outcomes that matter to health-care organizations.

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