About the Program

CDC’s Cancer Genomics Program develops best practices in education, surveillance, approaches for policy and systems, and uses science for applying family history and cancer genomics in public health practice. The program’s main goals are to increase the number of people—

  • Who have collected information on their family history of cancer and shared it with a health care provider.
  • Appropriately referred to genetic counseling and testing.

Activities focus on hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome and Lynch syndrome, which increases the risk of getting hereditary colorectal cancer. The program evaluates activities and strategies to understand their effect and to identify best practices to be used by other programs and organizations.

CDC funded three state health departments from 2011 to 2014 and five state health departments from 2014 to 2019 to develop activities in cancer genomics.

From 2019 through 2022, CDC’s Cancer Genomics Program is funding four state health departments to—

  • Educate the public about how a family history of cancer can affect their risk.
  • Help health care providers talk to patients about their family health history and the potential need for referral to a genetic specialist.
  • Use data from cancer registries, state surveys, and other sources to learn about hereditary cancers in their states, and the needs of providers and high-risk individuals and families.
  • Increase access to and use of clinical services like genetic counseling, genetic testing, and cancer screening for people at high risk.
  • Develop partnerships with health systems and state and local organizations to find ways to address the needs of people who have a high risk of cancer.

To learn more about the program’s strategies and outcomes, please read the logic model.