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Characteristics of Genetic Counseling Clients 

Characteristics of Genetic Counseling Clients
Chapter:
Characteristics of Genetic Counseling Clients
Author(s):

Barbara B. Biesecker

, Kathryn F. Peters

, Robert Resta

, and Biesecker Barbara

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190626426.003.0004
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date: 31 October 2020

It is readily apparent that not all genetic counseling clients are homogeneous. However, it is harder to appreciate the ways that client variability can impact the process, dynamics, and outcomes of genetic counseling. Some of the critical client characteristics that come into play during genetic counseling are religion, gender, sexuality, ethnicity and culture, language, health status, age, and family dynamics. These traits influence not only the way that we perceive and engage with clients, but also the way that clients perceive and engage with us. Failure to recognize the influence of these characteristics can result in poor counseling outcomes and frustration on the part of both clients and counselors. Awareness and management of transference and countertransference are critical to delivering competent and compassionate care.

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