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The Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling (ACGC) is the specialized program accreditation board for educational training programs granting master’s degrees or higher in genetic counseling.
ACGC’s purpose is to provide leadership by protecting the interest of the students, public and the integrity of the genetic counseling profession through:
Establishing standards for graduate level genetic counseling education
Evaluating educational programs to ensure compliance with those standards
Accrediting genetic counseling training programs that meet the accreditation standards established by the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling
ACGC Mission and Scope
The Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling (ACGC) protects the interests of students and the public by setting standards for genetic counseling education and accrediting graduate programs.
Providing educational opportunities for students to be successful in the genetic counseling profession
Setting Standards for integrity of the profession and advancing accreditation
Forward thinking/Proactive in business development – (not reactive to environment)
Resource for developing high quality educational programs worldwide (internationally)
Advancing Academic quality
Employs fair and equitable decision making
Demonstrates ongoing review of accreditation practices
ACGC is the successor organization to the American Board of Genetic Counseling (ABGC). As genetic counseling continued to grow as a profession, its accrediting and credentialing body needed to evolve. In the fall of 2011, ABGC announced the spinoff of its accreditation activities and formation of a separate accrediting body. As of January 1, 2013 there will officially be two separate organizations. ABGC will continue to certify individuals who meet qualifications and successfully pass the examination. ACGC will accredit training programs.
Why is it important to have a certifying and accrediting body?
As a healthcare profession evolves, recognition of a standard of practice also evolves. In order to legally assure that the genetic counseling profession was a recognized profession within the healthcare field, there had to be a measure of competence that defined a competent professional. In defining a competent genetic counselor, the profession had to have an objective measure of practitioners (i.e., the certifying examination) and minimum training standards (i.e., accreditation of programs). Establishing these components allowed (and continues to allow) us to define and protect our scope of practice through state licensure, federal and payer recognition. Establishing all of these components also protects the public, consumers, patients and healthcare facilities from unscrupulous practitioners.