Thursday, August 27, 2009

Journal of Genetic Counseling to get an Impact Factor

I have just returned from representing NSGC at the NIH State of the Science meeting regarding using Family history to improve health outcomes. Check out the consensus statement released by the panel. In addition, you can check out updates released throughout the meeting on twitter at You can sign up now to follow all future NSGC updates on twitter. I am heading to Atlanta this weekend to serve as the NSGC task force member for a Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy/CDC funded initiative to improve early diagnosis, care, and management for Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy (DBMD) and other childhood onset muscle disorders.

There is also some exciting new to share from Bonnie S. LeRoy, Editor-in-Chief and Pat McCarthy Veach, Assistant Editor of the Journal of Genetic Counseling which has recently been accepted for coverage by Thomson Reuters, effective 18:1 (Feb 09). The Journal will get an Impact Factor in 2011, but in the meantime it will be indexed and abstracted in Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition (this is the Impact Factor section), and Current Contents/Clinical Medicine. This is a tremendous accomplishment for our Journal and our profession.

So what does it really mean? An impact factor provides one indication of the extent to which the Journal of Genetic Counseling is being read and cited in current research. It is a gauge of sorts, indicative of the possible impact the journal has on current research in our area of expertise. It is important because some funding agencies and academic institutions require authors to publish in journals that have achieved an impact factor. From a practical standpoint, this means that the Journal of Genetic Counseling is now a publication option for many more authors. The number of manuscripts submitted should increase, and the Journal might be a publishing opportunity for authors conducting research in a wider variety of areas.

So how can you help the Journal of Genetic Counseling? You can tell researchers in your institution about this achievement. If you are a researcher, you can send your manuscripts to the Journal of Genetic Counseling knowing that you are a major factor contributing to the high quality of research in our profession.

This is an achievement for all of us because the Journal of Genetic Counseling is our professional window to the scientific community. Genetic counseling has indeed earned a place at the table with other sciences.

I would like to offer a well deserved thank you to both Bonnie and Pat and everyone involved with the Journal of Genetic Counseling now and in the past for their efforts in helping to increase the significance of our journal and further elevate genetic counselors as recognized thought leaders of genetic medicine.

Steven Keiles
President, NSGC

Monday, August 10, 2009

NIH Consensus Development Program & Twitter

The NIH Consensus Development Program is convening a state-of-the-science conference to assess the available evidence on family history and improving health. This conference is scheduled to take place on August 24th-26th at the NIH in Bethesda, Maryland. The conference statement will be prepared by an independent panel on the basis of a systematic literature review, expert presentations, and audience commentary. This conference is open to the public and there is no charge to register. I will be there representing the NSGC and I encourage everyone who able to attend to participate in the process that will undoubtedly have an impact on the genetic counseling profession. I look forward to seeing those of you who can attend at the meetings.

For those of you who cannot attend I have another addition to the NSGC’s menu of communication and this one is free. We have started a twitter account in the hopes of providing brief updates from your president, the executive office and the board of directors. This is also an opportunity to reach outside of our profession to communicate to colleagues, other health care providers, and the public at large about genetic counselors and what we are all about. Spread the word that anyone can now follow the NSGC at I am planning on providing real time updates from the NIH conference, so now is the time to set up your twitter account and follow along.Steven Keiles, NSGC President