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A multidisciplinary renal genetics clinic improves patient diagnosis

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Developments in genomic science are disproportionately in advance of their translational clinical application. Multidisciplinary clinics are proposed to overcome this1 in many medical fields.2 This is especially so in nephrology, which is typified by significant community disease burden3 and heritability.4 Several renal genetics clinics (RGCs) operate overseas, although their models and outcomes are largely unreported. The first multidisciplinary RGC in Australasia commenced at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital in August 2013, involving a clinical geneticist, nephrologist, genetic counsellor, and ancillary clinical and diagnostic services. The departments of clinical genetics and nephrology jointly operate the RGC. The clinical geneticist and nephrologist see families in the same appointment, maximising use of time. In this article, we report this clinical service’s initial outcomes and model for mainstreaming genetic medicine.

We undertook a retrospective cohort study of patients who attended the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital Renal Genetics Clinic during its first 2 years of operation (1 August 2013 to 31 August 2015; ethics approval reference, HREC/14/QRBW/187). During this period, 108 patients from 100 families were seen; the median age was 41 years (range, 13–86 years). Most patients…