The Jackson Laboratory and National Coalition of Health Professional Education in Genetics move to expand healthcare provider education

Bar Harbor, Maine—The Jackson Laboratory’s growing roster of educational initiatives now includes providing genetics and genomics education and information to healthcare professionals throughout the nation.

The Laboratory has signed an agreement with the National Coalition of Health Professional Education in Genetics (NCHPEG) to acquire its website, content and other assets, and to hire three of its employees. NCHPEG, a nonprofit organization based in Lutherville, Md., was scheduled to close its program when Jackson proposed preserving and growing this exceptional national resource.

NCHPEG was founded in 1996 as an "organization of organizations" committed to a national effort to promote health professional education and access to information about advances in human genetics. The organization grew to represent more than 50 health professional organizations, consumer and volunteer groups, government agencies, private industry, managed care organizations and genetics professional societies.

"The established NCHPEG platform will serve as the foundation for JAX’s goals to become producers of continuing medical education materials for health care providers, including physicians, genetic counselors, medical students, nurses and social workers," says Tom Litwin, Ph.D., Jackson’s vice president for education. "This team and platform will also serve as the foundation for the creation and online distribution of genetic and genomic literacy curricula and programs."

Andy Faucett, chairman of the NCHPEG board, says, "We are delighted that The Jackson Laboratory has worked with us to preserve NCHPEG’s programs for the benefit of the healthcare provider community and plans to build on NCHPEG’s legacy. JAX is well suited to assume this role. It is a highly regarded institution with an 84-year legacy of genetics research and education, and it is now an emerging leader in genomic medicine with its establishment of The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine in Farmington, Connecticut."

Faucett also acknowledges the American Society of Human Genetics for maintaining the NCHPEG website with its full complement of programs and materials during the transition to JAX’s stewardship, adding, "We are confident that JAX and its collaborators will build successfully on NCHPEG’s two-decade legacy of raising awareness and setting standards for genomics education."

Three key NCHPEG staff members have joined the JAX Education staff: Kate Reed, M.P.H., Sc.M., C.G.C., and Emily Edelman, M.S., C.G.C., director and associate director, respectively, of Clinical and Continuing Education, and senior instructional designer/technologist Therese Ingram Nissen, M.A.

The Jackson Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institution based in Bar Harbor, Maine, with a facility in Sacramento, Calif., and a new genomic medicine institute in Farmington, Conn. It employs a total staff of more than 1,500. Its mission is to discover precise genomic solutions for disease and empower the global biomedical community in the shared quest to improve human health.