Pharmacogenetic testing in outpatient mental health clinics
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate mental health clinicians' perceived knowledge regarding pharmacogenetic testing; their attitude, receptivity towards, and confidence in pharmacogenetic testing; and how pharmacogenetic testing is being implemented to support decision making in outpatient clinics. This study was guided by Rogers' Diffusion of Innovation (DOI) Theory. An exhausted literature search was conducted to find studies on mental health clinicians' knowledge, perceived attitudes, and implementation of pharmacogenetic testing. The subject population included 28 mental health clinicians who are actively utilizing pharmacogenetic testing in outpatient mental health clinics. Participants responded to semi-structured open-ended prompts regarding knowledge, perceptions and implementation of pharmacogenetic testing in mental health outpatient clinics. Data were analyzed using a qualitative descriptive approach. Five relevant themes emerged related to the perceptions of pharmacogenetic testing, impact on clinical decision-making, associated concerns of pharmacogenetic testing, knowledge gaps among clinicians, and policy challenges. Overall, clinicians perceived pharmacogenetic testing beneficial to guide dosing and medication selection to decrease the risk of side effects and increase tolerability of psychotropic medications. This study will lead to future research to support shared decision-making around pharmacogenetics testing, medication adherence and tolerability, and setting guidelines for pharmacogenetics testing in mental health clinics.
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