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    Certainty and uncertainty in genetic counselling: a qualitative case study

    Smith, Jonathan A. and Michie, S. and Allanson, A. and Elwy, R. (2000) Certainty and uncertainty in genetic counselling: a qualitative case study. Psychology & Health 15 (1), pp. 1-12. ISSN 0887-0446.

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    This study examines the communication that occurs during routine genetic counselling sessions. It involves the qualitative analysis of nine consultations with one member of a clinical genetics team. The consultations were characterised by a contrast between the sense of certainty apparent in how the clinician talked about the power and promise of the new genetics and the uncertainty communicated regarding the actual information produced by genetic tests and their limitations in solving people's problems. There was also a contrast between how the clinician seemed to control the format and agenda of the consultation and the apparently uncontrollable personal and social implications of the topics discussed. We speculate that this may be explained in terms of the clinician giving some order and certainty in an area of inherent uncertainty, and where great promises are as yet unrealised.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 09 Mar 2020 14:47
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:58


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