The National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC)
Audrey Heimler and colleagues founded the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) in 1979 in New Hyde Park in New York, New York. Her stated goals were to establish the field of genetic counseling within biomedicine and to coordinate counselors’ voices, so that physicians and others in the medical industry would not dictate the future of the field. Genetic counselors inform patients about the potential for inherited diseases passed on through family lineages and help to navigate the options available. NSGC helped establish the field of genetic counseling by formulating guidelines for accreditation in university programs, establishing curriculum for continuing education of members, and creating committees to respond to issues that pertain to genetic disorders and the way they are presented to patients. As scientists continue to research the human genome, particularly in the area of prenatal genetics, an area of medicine that allows physicians to diagnose the health of the fetus prior to birth, genetic counseling is an established field in reproductive medicine.