A Genetics Course for Advanced Clinical Nursing Practice

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Abstract

Purpose

To describe a genetics course for advanced clinical nursing practice.

Background

The Human Genome Project is yielding new discoveries in genetics. The sheer volume of new information threatens to overwhelm healthcare providers as they must find ways to interpret and use these discoveries.

Description of Project

The course was developed in recognition of the fact that graduate nursing students in advanced practice programs need to understand and apply genetic information in the care of their patients. The course builds on core competencies identified by the National Coalition for Health Professional Education in Genetics and the International Society of Nurses in Genetics.

Outcomes

Students demonstrate that they can access, evaluate, and synthesize current information on a genetic condition and develop a comprehensive plan of care for patients with the selected condition.

Interpretation/Conclusion

Students learn basic and applied genetic concepts and skills. They are able to utilize resources appropriately to identify patient care needs and develop strategies for meeting those needs.

Implications for Nursing Practice

The need to remain current in understanding emerging technologies and genetic information will continue to grow as scientific discoveries are made that affect greater numbers of the public. Nurses in advanced practice are in a position to support patients and their families as they deal with the significance of these discoveries for their current and future health.

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