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Oncology Genetic Counselors

Not all cancers are hereditary.

In fact, almost 90 percent can be attributed to environmental factors, lifestyle choices or a combination of reasons. However, you should consider genetic counseling and education/testing if your family history includes:

  • Multiple cases of cancer, especially breast, colon, ovarian, uterine, melanoma, pancreatic or prostate in the family.
  • Individuals with more than one cancer.
  • Cancer at an unusually early age.
  • A known genetic mutation in a family.

Hall-Perrine Cancer Center’s Certified1 Oncology Genetics Counselor help patients and their loved ones understand cancer risk factors based on family history and genetics. Services available include:

Risk Assessment (Free Service)

Cancer Genetics Videos

Your initial consultation will include education, counseling and general information about genetics and cancer. We will review your personal and family medical history. We provide information on the testing process, risks and benefits of testing, implications for family members, elements of informed consent, and a broad overview of the medical management options.

Testing Process

Genetic testing is not for everyone and we will help determine if this step is appropriate for you. We facilitate the testing process by collecting a small sample of blood or saliva and sending it to a special lab for analysis. Results take approximately three weeks. We will notify you when the results are returned.

Post-Testing Education

After test results are available, we will meet with you to interpret the results and explain the implications. We work with your healthcare providers to help you make informed healthcare decisions.

Referral & Resource Support

No referral is needed. We also provide emotional support and help you share this information with your family members.

For more information about the Hall-Perrine Cancer Center's Cancer Genetics Program, call Kate Durda, CGC, at (319) 398-6265 or email kdurda@mercycare.org.


1 A Certified Genetic Counselor (CGC©) demonstrates a proficient  level of knowledge and competence as a genetic counselor. The ABGC certification, CGC© credential, is the gold standard in the genetic counseling profession. The CGC© credential is recognized and used by employers, licensing boards, third party payers and the public to identify qualified genetic counselors who have attained credibility and value as a health care professional with specific knowledge and skills.

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