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Taehan Kanho Hakhoe Chi. 2003 Dec;33(8):1083-92.

The nurses' knowledge and perception of their role in genetics.

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  • 1Ewha Woman's University, Tongdaemun Hospital, Seoul, Korea.



The purpose of the study was to assess the level of nurses' genetic knowledge and the perception of nurses' role in genetics. The ultimate goal of this paper is to educate practicing nurses so that they can counsel individuals and families with genetic problems, on the basis of better understanding of genetic diseases.


A total of 969 clinical nurses in 11 general hospitals completed a self-administered questionnaire including basic genetic knowledge and perception of their role. The instruments were made by the author with the help of some experts on genetics. T-test, ANOVA, and Pearson Correlation were used to analyze the data.


The results of this study indicated that nurses revealed a vast knowledge deficit in genetics and the need for genetic content in nursing curriculum. The results also showed that nurses' sources of information about genetics largely came from the mass media. The nurses also expressed great interest in educating and counseling patients. Overall, the survey found a positive correlation between the nurses' level of knowledge and their degree of interest in genetics.


In conclusion, education and training of clinical nurses in genetics is critical in integrating genetics with nursing science. Therefore, the development of educational programs for nursing knowledge and counseling as well as basic curriculums in genetic nursing at universities are essential in the near future.

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