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Risk Assessment: Post Session Resources

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Many tools exist to help health providers collect, record, interpret, and communicate about family history information.  This page contains a few of those tools.  We provide this list for information only; El Camino, Genetic Alliance, and NCHPEG do not endorse any of these tools.

General Readings

Value of Family History

Research on importance of family history and evaluation of tools

Personalized Medicine

Family History Tools

Collection Tools

Electronic collection tools

These tools collect family history information systematically with patient-friendly interface on freely accessible websites.  The tools can be completed by the patient at home or the provider in the office.  The programs provide a final pedigree for printing that can be shared with the provider and incorporated into a patient’s chart.

Paper collection tools

These tools are designed to be filled out by the patient or provider during, or sometimes before, the visit.  These provide information to the provider in a text based rather than graphical (pedigree) form.

  • Genetic Alliance has developed a modifiable booklet for patients and community groups to collect and understand the importance of family history information.
  • The American Medical Association has developed collection tools for different populations:
  • American Heart Association.  The Heart of Diabetes Family History Tool.

Tips and guidance for family history collection and pedigree drawing

A number of organizations have guides and aids to help providers draw pedigrees.

Interpretation and Risk Assessment

These are tools to help providers identify important risks within the family history.  Some organizations have also developed schema to assign appropriate risk levels based on family history of specific conditions, such as breast cancer.

Global Risk Interpretation and Assessment

Condition-specific interpretation and assessment


Risk Assessment Practice

  • NCHPEG. Genetics for the Physician Assistant. Although originally developed for physician assistants, this case-based program covers the concepts of risk assessment and genetic testing in a patient-centered way, appropriate for providers of all types.