St George's, University of London Online Course - The Future of Genetics in Medicine

Publish Date: Apr 26, 2016

The Future of Genetics in Medicine

This free online course will provide healthcare professionals with a basic grounding in genomic medicine. It will introduce you to the new genomic technologies that are revolutionising medicine and will, in time, provide the mainstay of patient diagnosis, treatment and disease prevention.

Continuing Professional Development

This course has been approved for Distance Learning Continuing Professional Development (CPD) by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP), the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP).

The RCP has approved this course for 10 Category 1 (external) CPD credits.

The RCPCH has approved this distance learning product from 09 October 2015 to 09 October 2017 for a total of 10 CPD credits, in accordance with the current RCPCH CPD Guidelines. A breakdown of CPD credits available per module is listed within the resource and is available from the provider.

The RCGP has accredited this activity for 10 hours of CPD activity.

Learners wishing to qualify for CPD credit will be required to purchase a Statement of Participation as evidence of having completed the course.

Explore the rise of genomic medicine

Over the last decade, the landscape of genomic medicine has been revolutionised by next generation sequencing technologies. In the past, genetic testing was limited to sequencing one gene at a time. However, next generation sequencing technologies permit the parallel sequencing of many or all genes.

While these new technologies have greatly enhanced the chances of diagnosis for rare conditions; are beginning to provide a real chance of personalised medicine; and, in time, are likely to improve our understanding and treatment of complex disease, they are also associated with a number of challenges.

These challenges include a much greater chance of identifying genomic variants, the significance of which can be uncertain; the identification of incidental findings; genomic privacy; and the storage and use of big data sets.

In this new genomic era, it is essential that healthcare professionals understand the power and all the challenges associated with the information generated by these new multiple parallel sequencing technologies, in order to make appropriate referrals and evidence-based management decisions.

Discover the potential of genetics in healthcare

This course will give you an awareness of genomic technologies and the data they generate. With ready access to genomic data promised by NHS transformational initiatives such as the 100,000 Genomes Project, genomic data will be integral to all sectors of medicine and will be used in the prevention, diagnosis and personalised treatment of human disease.

During this course, you will learn how to utilise these genomic results for patient benefit and without compromising patient safety.

Learn with experts in clinical genetics and education

The course draws on the experience of experts in clinical genetics and education at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, St George’s, University of London, and the Genomics Education Programme from Health Education England.

St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is a founding member of the Genomics Network Alliance, recognised by NHS England as a Genomic Medicine Centre.

Understand the role of clinical geneticists

As clinical geneticists, who undertake diagnosis and care of patients with genetic conditions on a regular basis, the course educators are able to explain the role of novel technologies, and explore how the technologies - and the data they generate - are relevant to clinical practice both now and in the future.

The educators are also very familiar with the challenges associated with the use of genomic technologies and will discuss these with you during the course. In addition, they bring with them a range of experience and skills outside of clinical genetics, with active involvement in research projects using next generation sequencing technologies, and postgraduate degrees in medical education, and medical ethics and law.

This online course was created in May 2015, and revised in October 2015.


This course is aimed at current healthcare professionals, who are interested in learning more about the fundamentals of genetics and how genomic technologies are transforming medical practice.

It is not essential to have previous genetic knowledge or experience, although medical terminology is used and the course is designed to be applicable to clinical practice.

Further Official Information

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