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Mainstreaming Genetic Testing For Cancer Treatment

Improve the quality of care for your cancer patients as you learn the skills to implement genetic testing in your practice.

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Mainstreaming Genetic Testing For Cancer Treatment

  • 6 weeks

  • 2 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

Learn how to reduce barriers to genetic testing with Universiti Malaya

The rapid change in the practice of genetic testing requires new physician skill sets. With these skills, physicians can use mainstream genetic testing as an important tool to inform healthcare decisions and help improve the quality of care for cancer patients.

On this six-week course from Universiti Malaya, you’ll be supported to successfully implement genetic testing into your practice.

You’ll gain practical skills in mainstreaming genetic testing for targeted cancer patients. You’ll also develop an awareness of the barriers and the ethical, legal, and social issues surrounding genetic counselling and testing.

Explore BRCA testing

You’ll start by exploring BRCA testing terminology to help you understand the differences in various testing methods.

Next, you’ll unpack the importance of BRCA testing in cancer care patients as you learn how to interpret technical BRCA lab results and deliver post-test counselling.

Gain an understanding of basic genetics and shared decision-making

To help you develop a strong foundation of knowledge, you’ll learn the basics of genetics. Within this, you’ll explore family history and the ethical, legal, and social issues in counselling.

You’ll then explore the importance of shared decision-making in genetic testing and how to best facilitate this with patients.

Learn how to implement genetic counselling in your practice

Using real-life case studies, you’ll gain the practical skills to put what you have learned into action in your context.

By the end of the course, you’ll know how to use mainstreaming genetic testing and counselling to improve your cancer care.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds Welcome to the Mainstreaming Genetic Testing in cancer course. In the era of precision medicine, Many biomarkers are being introduced into our cancer practice. Genetic testing is not new and has been mainly for the identification and management of cancer risk rather than for treatments. The BRCA gene is now a predictive marker to treatments. Thus the cancer professional will need to upskill to provide treatment focus genetic testing or mainstreaming genetic testing service to the patients. This six week course that we developed will bring you on a journey to have in-depth knowledge and tools on how to implement your own mainstreaming genetic testing practice.

Skip to 0 minutes and 56 seconds Week one, will help you understand why as a cancer professional, genetic testing in your practice is crucial for the patients to access treatments. Week two, will give you the building blocks to implement it in your clinic. Week three, will give you much needed basic genetic information to enhance your practice. Week four, will help you execute shared decision making in genetic testing and risk management of BRCA carriers in your practice. Week five, will help you apply the knowledge to clinical scenarios. And finally, week six, will help you form an action plan to provide this care pathway in your hospital with your existing resources.

Skip to 1 minute and 48 seconds Hence, on behalf of the educators in this course, we welcome you to the mainstreaming genetic testing in cancer course. We hope by providing you the tools, you will be able to implement other new tests in your practice.


  • Week 1

    Introduction to the course

    • Getting started

      Meet our team and learn more about our course.

    • Back to basics

      This Back to Basics section gives an overview of hereditary breast cancer syndromes and BRCA testing terminology

    • Why do we need to do mainstreaming of genetic testing?

      Dr Adila will help you decide why BRCA genetic testing is vital in your practice. When we identify individuals with higher cancer risk we can improve patient access to better treatment and risk management options.

    • Weekly wrap up

      Welcome to the start of the journey of not just learning but implementing mainstreaming genetic testing into your routine clinical practice.

  • Week 2

    Mainstreaming BRCA testing

    • BRCA testing pathways

      Prof Aishah explains the difference between mainstreaming and traditional genetic testing pathways. Let us learn more about how to apply genetic testing into our routine cancer clinics.

    • Mainstreaming genetic testing

      Cancer clinicians like surgeons and oncologists can improve access to genetic testing, risk management and targeted therapies by adopting mainstreaming into our routine care.

    • Pre-test counselling and the consent process

      Genetic counselling is a daunting step to add to our routine cancer practice. What if we deconstruct the process? It will be difficult and time-consuming at first. But with practice comes ease!!

    • Ordering the genetic test

      In this video, Ms. Yoon will explain on how to choose the lab, types of sample, overcoming logistic challenges, interpreting technical BRCA lab results and understanding the limitations of the different genetic testing platform

    • Results disclosure and post-test counselling

      Cancer clinicians need to understand what BRCA test results mean. Remember that a BRCA negative test is not the same as having a negative result in other diagnostic tests.

    • Communication skills in mainstreaming genetic testing

      This section provides some tips for communicating effectively with your patients. Learn more about S.P.I.K.E.S. from Prof Aishah.

    • Medical records documentation

      This section provides tips on how to record sensitive genetic information into patient medical records.

    • Creating a supporting environment for mainstreaming

      You may feel overwhelmed about where to start. It is crucial to find a team and plan. Don't worry. We will go through the steps again in week 6.

    • Weekly wrap up

      Well done! You have completed week 2. We hope you can comfortably perform pre-test counselling, informed consent, result disclosure and post-test counselling.

  • Week 3

    Basic genetics, family history and ethical, legal & social issues in counselling

    • Basic genetics

      Learn from the best! Prof Thong has been a pioneer in providing genetic counselling in cancer genetics for the last 20 years. He will ground us back to basic genetics and help us remember the genetics we learned in medical school.

    • The basics in taking a family history

      Dr Tae will help us understand the purpose of preparing and how to construct a pedigree with sufficient information.

    • Impact of genetic testing to the individual and the family

      Ms Rifhan will share how to do risk communication and how people perceive and communicate risk. Learn possible ways to overcome misunderstandings during genetic counselling.

    • Shared decision making in genetic testing

      This section gives the learners a grounding on shared decision-making in genetic testing.

    • Weekly wrap up

      Understanding the basic genetics, family history and Ethical, Legal & Social Issues in Counselling.

  • Week 4

    Risk management and shared decision making in mainstreaming genetic testing

    • Cancer risk management

      This section will help learners learn about communicating the risks of future cancers and counsel BRCA patients and clients on the risk management of future cancers.

    • Shared decision making

      Shared decision-making (SDM) is vital in all aspects of care. In this activity, you would learn about the key components of SDM in risk management and the use of patient decision aids to facilitate this process.

    • Weekly wrap up

      Congratulations on completing week 4! I hope you were able to find the sections helpful. Different specialities usually perform risk management. The patient must receive logistic support from a staff member.

  • Week 5

    Case scenarios

    • BRCA testing criteria

      These case scenarios will help you strengthen your understanding of the mainstreaming BRCA testing criteria.

    • Treatment with PARP inhibitors

      After knowing cancer/mainstreaming BRCA testing criteria, this section will help you understand the patient selection for parp inhibitors in the adjuvant and palliative setting.

    • Risk management

      This section will help learners understand the role of genetic testing and management in special populations.

    • Weekly wrap up

      We are almost done! Congratulations on completing week 5.

  • Week 6

    Implementing a service

    • A guided action plan

      It is important to think through the following steps to start the mainstreaming genetic implementation process.

    • Creating a supporting environment to implement mainstreaming in your practice

      Many challenges are faced in the low and middle resource settings to provide genetic testing. To develop, implement and sustain a service, you need to identify the available resources. These resources may be internal or external.

    • Weekly wrap up

      Six weeks have gone by, we hope you enjoyed the course.

    • Course wrap up

      Thank you for your active participation! We hope you are now empowered to bring mainstreaming genetic testing and risk management into your routine clinical practice. Please provide us feedback for improvements.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Understand the benefits and reasons for mainstreaming genetic testing
  • Apply genetic testing criteria and the process of getting consent
  • Discuss genetic testing criteria and the process of getting consent
  • Execute an action plan to mainstream genetic testing in their clinical practice

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for general physicians, breast surgeons, clinical oncologists, family medicine specialists, and surgical, oncology, and FMS trainees.

Who will you learn with?

Senior consultant breast surgeon, professor in the Department of Surgery and head of UM Cancer Research Institute. She is trained in genetic counselling and is active in implementation research.

Dr Nur Adila Mokhtar is a Clinical Oncologist and a Medical Lecturer at the department of Clinical Oncology, University Malaya and UMMC. She has special interest in breast and genitourinary cancer.

I am a certified Genetic Counsellor and is accredited by the Human Genetics Society Australasia (FHGSA). My interests are in the development of genetic counselling in the country.

I'm a consultant clinical geneticist and paediatrician at the University of Malaya, Malaysia.

Dr Hamizah is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya. Her expertise is in Shared Decision Making and the psychosocial aspect of hereditary cancer.

Ms Rifhan Mazlan works as genetic counsellor at Medicine Genetic Unit, University Malaya Medical Centre. She is attending pediatric, prenatal and adult cancer cases.

I am a senior lecturer at the Department of Primary Care Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya.

Senior staff nurse with 10+ yrs experienced providing quality care in holistic of breast cancer patients. She also involved in clinic management for patients with genetic.

Who developed the course?

Universiti Malaya

Universiti Malaya is the premier research university in Malaysia, committed to advancing knowledge and learning through quality research and education for the nation and for humanity.

  • Established

  • Location

    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • World ranking

    Top 60Source: QS World University Rankings 2021

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Buy this course

$134/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 30 Aug 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

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