Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 134  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 561-571

Genetic counselling in tribals in India

Apollo Hospitals, Bhubaneswar, India

Correspondence Address:
Dipika Mohanty
Sr. Consultant Hematologist, Apollo Hospitals, Plot No. 251, Old Sainik School Road, Unit-15, Bhubaneswar 751 005
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 22089621

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Genetic counselling in tribals unlike general population residing in cities and near villages is a difficult task due of their lower literacy and poor socio-economic status. However, sustained effort is essential with a close interaction in the local language, certain misbeliefs need to be removed gradually taking into account their socio-cultural background. The present communication deals with our experience in counselling for haemoglobinopathies during Neonatal Screening Programme undertaken for sickle cell disease in Kalahandi district of Orissa and Community Screening Programmes in primitive tribes of India in four States viz. Orissa, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra. Counselling during neonatal screening programme was very well accepted demonstrating the benefit to the small babies as regards the morbidity. Premarital marriage counselling was also accepted by them. The success rate as followed up for 5 years is almost 50 per cent, the limitation being long follow up. Genetic counselling in these areas has to be continuous to achieve success and therefore the need for setting up of permanent centres in the tribal areas in India.

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