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Beyond validity and utility: thinking sociologically about the usefulness of genetic tests

May 7 2007

Venue: Seminar Rm 1.06, Old Surgeons' Hall, High School Yards

Organised by: Innogen


The aim of this presentation is to start moving discussion of the clinical uptake of genetic tests beyond technical debates over the validity of specific tests (are they accurate enough? Is their positive predictive value high enough?) and even wider discussions around a test's utility (is there a treatment available for the disease tested for? Is the test cost effective?) to a more sociological idea of 'usefulness'. For a genetic test to be widely adopted in a clinical setting it needs to be not just technically valid but also useful, in that it needs to fit with the broader cultural and ethical values of the clinician group expected to use it.

This paper explores some of those factors that contribute to a genetic test's usefulness.,1341,en.t4.html