8 November 2019

RCPath President Professor Jo Martin’s TED-style talk on at-home genetics testing is now available to view on our YouTube channel.

Members of the public were invited to join College President, Professor Jo Martin, at a special public discussion event to find out what at-home genetic testing kits really measure.

Held at the Neuron Pod at Centre of the Cell on Thursday 10 October, the audience were informed about concerns amongst health professionals about issues around quality and validity of the tests, and about possible negative impacts on pathology and other health services.

There are advantages to ‘direct-to-consumer’ genetic testing kits – they give you the choice to discover if your genes make you more likely to develop certain conditions. However, confusion and anxiety about what the results mean amongst the ‘worried well’ could lead to unforeseen pressures on an already over-burdened health service, as people who have paid for these analyses seek medical advice and additional (and often unnecessary) tests. The audience were urged to always be as informed as possible and read the small print.

Watch the full video, including the Q&A session, below and on our YouTube channel.