Genome Magazine Kicks Off “Code Talkers” National Essay Contest to Honor Genetic Counselors, Sponsored by Invitae

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Clinicians, patients and families invited to submit essays recognizing the impact of genetic counselors. Finalists to be featured in a book and honored at National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference.

Genetic counselors are on the frontline, standing alongside patients and their families as they try to make very difficult treatment decisions.

People across the U.S. are sharpening their pencils and honing their writing skills by taking part in Genome magazine’s Code Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to a genetic counselor by nominating him or her for an award to be presented at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this September.

In April, Genome magazine and the NSGC kicked off the Code Talker Award contest and will accept essays until June 30, 2016. The magazine is seeking nominations from patients, caregivers, and peers detailing the compassion, expertise, and helpfulness a genetic counselor has demonstrated and the resulting impact that the care had on a patient or his or her family.

“Patients with certain genetic conditions and their families face many daunting challenges when trying to uncover the underlying cause of their diseases,” said Susan McClure, publisher of Genome. “Quite often, the search for a genetic culprit is emotionally draining and fraught with clues that lead nowhere. Genetic counselors are on the frontline, standing alongside patients and their families as they try to make very difficult treatment decisions,” said McClure. “Genome magazine is proud to honor the work of these dedicated professionals.”

After assessing the submitted essays, the Genome team will announce three finalists. Finalists, the essayists, and their guests will receive round-trip airfare and a two-night stay in Seattle, where they will be honored at an awards ceremony at the conference. The essays will be read aloud and one genetic counselor will be named, Genome’s Code Talker of the year.

"Invitae is proud to be supporting the Code Talkers program in shining a light on the impact genetic counselors have on improving patient care each and every day," said Kate Lynch, M.S., LCGC, genetic counselor at Invitae. "We are excited to be part of this effort to help patients and peers honor those genetic counselors who have truly made a difference in the lives of their patients."

At the end of the ceremony, a reception will be held to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the NSGC AEC. Each attendee will receive a copy of Genome’s Code Talker book — a collection of the best essays along with beautiful photography. The book will serve as an enduring testament to the important role genetic counselors play in the quality of people’s lives.

“As the leading voice for genetic counselors, NSGC is honored to host presentation of Genome’s Code Talker Award during our conference,” said Jehannine Austin, NSGC President. “As we celebrate the 35th anniversary of our members coming together for education and networking, it is fitting that we provide this unique opportunity for patients to celebrate the impact of genetic counselors on their lives and the lives of their family members.”

The contest and the Code Talker Awards ceremony are made possible by Invitae.

For more information about Genome’s Code Talker Award, visit genomemag.com/codetalker

About Genome magazine
Genome is a national consumer magazine (300,000+ circulation) that explores the complexity of genomics and personalized medicine along with the associated ethical, social, and legal issues — in a relevant and easy-to-understand manner for a lay audience. Its quarterly publication is for the public at large: patients, family, caregivers, and healthcare professionals on the education frontlines. Genome’s mission is to empower readers to make informed health decisions that will help them live better and longer. For more information visit genomemag.com.

About Invitae
Invitae Corporation's mission is to bring comprehensive genetic information into mainstream medical practice to improve the quality of healthcare for billions of people. Invitae’s goal is to aggregate most of the world’s genetic tests into a single service with higher quality, faster turnaround time, and lower price than many single-gene and panel tests today. The company currently provides a diagnostic service comprising hundreds of genes for a variety of genetic disorders associated with oncology, cardiology, neurology, pediatrics, and other rare disease areas. For more information, visit our website at invitae.com.

About the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC)

NSGC is the leading voice, authority and advocate for the genetic counseling profession, representing more than 3,000 health care professionals. The organization is committed to ensuring that the public has access to genetic services. For more information visit NSGC.org.

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