Kelly Morgan, MS, CGC, the Future of Telemedicine and Genetic Testing


The MSK expert discussed how telemedicine may change genetic testing and its access for patients.

While pre- and post-test education on genetic testing helped to educate patients, recent study findings may also highlight the way that telemedicine is revolutionizing the space, according to Kelly Morgan, MS, CGC.

In a recent study, presented at the 2020 ASCO Virtual Scientific Program, the BRCA Founder OutReach (BFOR) offered pre-testing online education with posttest engagement of primary care providers, which appeared to be effective in educating both patients and providers alike.

In an interview with CancerNetwork, Morgan, a genetic counselor at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, explained how telemedicine is changing the future of genetic testing.


The current focus is going to be continuing to survey our participants and then analyze and report out our findings. These are sort of our first set of early results. But the goal from there is, there's a lot of different ways in which this information can probably be used in terms of next steps.

One of the things I mentioned was the idea of new ways to engage primary care providers. So that's certainly an area of interest. One thing I didn't mention, but it's also kind of along the lines of where we want to go is we were very happy with the recruitment that we achieved, but at the same time, we think this tool could be used even more broadly, potentially. So finding ways to better distribute this information and engage a broader number of participants. And then lastly, the immediate context for this is thinking about how this model may work for population screening in the Ashkenazi Jewish group. But there are ways that we could pivot this to other situations as well. So, whether that be things like testing family members for an unknown mutation, or maybe there are other groups with predominant risk factors where this model could work as well. So, I think that once we better understand the long term medical outcomes of participants, we will be able to continue to think about different ways that we can improve and change the model and then apply it further in this context and others as well.

I think, now more than ever, is a time where there's almost a digital revolution, if you will, and a lot of technology in the forefront. So, from our perspective, our goal is to find a way to leverage technology in the context of medicine and use it for better. So there's always a lot going on in terms of many different ways to access testing direct to consumer testing. And, you know, if and when this sort of convenience can be combined with medicine, I think there's a lot of opportunities for improved patient care through that partnership.

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