Why choose Clinical genetics?
Clinical Geneticists do not spend all day looking down a microscope. We investigate, diagnose, and counsel individuals who may have a genetic condition and their families. Clinical genetics encompasses a wide range of conditions, and it is one of the few remaining specialties that provides for both adults and children. It is also on the forefront of changes in modern medicine and keeping up to date keeps it interesting.
Genetics is expanding as a clinical specialty, and in recent years many new consultant posts have been created. Trainees who develop a research interest are likely to have the best career prospects in the future.
The NHS Northern Genetics Service is part of Newcastle upon Tyne’s Institute of Genetic Medicine (IGM) which occupies purpose-built accommodation within the International Centre for Life. The location provides an exciting clinical and research environment and state-of-the art facilities.
As a trainee what can I expect from my training programme?
Specialised genetic services have developed in the United Kingdom as regional centres of expertise and, in this region these services are co-ordinated through the Northern Genetics Service. The Northern Genetics Service provides outpatient services to local hospitals to avoid patients having to travel long distances, but all trainees are based in Newcastle at the International Centre for Life (with an option of a rotation to the Teesside unit in Middlesbrough).
The aim of clinical training with the Northern Genetics Service is to produce clinical geneticists:
- who are competent in the diagnosis and investigation of a wide range of inherited disorders in all age groups
- who are experienced in the appropriate requesting and understanding of genetic testing, including diagnostic testing and pre symptomatic genetic testing for late onset disorders;
- who understand and apply knowledge of the ethical issues related to genetic disease;
- who have experience in antenatal testing for genetic disorders and are able to counsel families about unexpected genetic findings.