Genetic clinics in arab communities: meeting individual, family and community needs

Public Health Genomics. 2009;12(1):30-40. doi: 10.1159/000153428. Epub 2008 Sep 3.


Arab societies are characterized by a wide range of family and social structures, religious and legal conventions, and highly variable economic resources. As might be expected under these circumstances, genetic services cannot readily be devised, delivered, and assessed according to a single model. However, in general terms, the provision of genetic services in Arab communities at all population levels is still inadequate given the prevalence and burden of genetic diseases. Improving this situation calls for major educational efforts that include increasing the genetic literacy of the general public, comprehensive courses and campaigns to familiarize primary health care workers with counseling needs and skills and with referral guidelines for high-risk families, updating medical, nursing, and paramedical curricula to incorporate information on community genetics, and training clinical and laboratory genetic specialists to meet the short- and long-term goals of genetic disease prevention and management.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arabs
  • Genetic Services / statistics & numerical data*
  • Genomics*
  • Humans
  • Precision Medicine
  • Public Health*