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Public Health Genomics. 2012;15(3-4):181-8. doi: 10.1159/000336431. Epub 2012 Apr 4.

Family history tools in primary care: does one size fit all?

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  • 1University of Ottawa, Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine, 451 Smyth Road, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. bwilson@uottawa.ca


Family health history (FHH) has potential value in many health care settings. This review discusses the potential uses of FHH information in primary care and the need for tools to be designed accordingly. We developed a framework in which the attributes of FHH tools are mapped against these different purposes. It contains 7 attributes mapped against 5 purposes. In considering different FHH tool purposes, it is apparent that different attributes become more or less important, and that tools for different purposes require different implementation and evaluation strategies. The context in which a tool is used is also relevant to its effectiveness. For FHH tools, it is unlikely that 'one size fits all', although appreciation of different purposes, users and contexts should facilitate the development of different applications from single FHH platforms.

Copyright © 2012 S. Karger AG, Basel.

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