Courses in human genetics, birth defects, ethics, and counseling, among others
Thesis or capstone projects based on student conducted research
After earning a degree, genetic counselors become certified by taking and passing a certification exam.
Genetic counselors provide a critical service to individuals and families considering undergoing genetic testing by helping them identify their risks for certain disorders, investigate family health history, interpret information, and determine if testing is needed.
The genetic counseling process helps people understand and adapt to the medical, psychological, and familial implications of genetic contributions to disease.
Interview patients to get comprehensive individual family and medical histories.
Evaluate genetic information to identify patients or families at risk for specific genetic disorders.
Write detailed consultation reports to provide information on complex genetic concepts for patients or referring physicians.
Compassion. Patients seek advice on family care or serious illness, so genetic counselors must be sensitive and compassionate when communicating their findings.
Critical-thinking skills. Genetic counselors analyze laboratory findings to determine how best to advise a patient or family. They use their applied knowledge of genetics to assess inherited risks properly.
Decision-making skills. Genetic counselors must use their expertise and experience to determine how to disseminate their findings properly to their patients.
Speaking skills. Genetic counselors must communicate complex findings so that their patients can understand the magnitude of a health problem.
Where will you work
Genetic counselors work in university medical centers, private and public hospitals, diagnostic laboratories, and physicians’ offices.
They work with families, patients, and other medical professionals. Most genetic counselors work full time.
There is a structured career path within the NHS from pre-registration genetic counsellor to genetic counsellor, principal/lead genetic counsellor and, ultimately, consultant genetic counsellor.
Once qualified, you can progress through the grades by gaining experience and taking further training. Promotion is based on merit and you may need to move to other hospitals to make the most of available opportunities.
Principal genetic counsellors are experts with substantial experience and training beyond that of a genetic counsellor.
Salary estimates based on salary survey data collected directly from employers and anonymous employees in India.
The average genetic counselor gross salary in India is ₹5,94,205 or an equivalent hourly rate of ₹286. In addition, they earn an average bonus of ₹11,409.
An entry level genetic counselor (1-3 years of experience) earns an average salary of ₹4,35,814. On the other end, a senior level genetic counselor (8+ years of experience) earns an average salary of ₹7,42,111.
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