Pregnant Hispanic women's views and knowledge of prenatal genetic testing. Academic Article uri icon


  • Pregnant Hispanic women are underserved with their needs for genetic counseling, despite birth defects remaining the leading cause of infant death in the United States. We present the qualitative findings of a study to understand knowledge and perceptions of prenatal testing in a sample of hard-to-reach underrepresented Hispanic pregnant women in South Texas. The sample for this study was 10 Hispanic pregnant women who were recruited from a high-risk prenatal clinic in South Texas in 2019. The semi-structured interview questions were created based on the researchers' clinical experiences with this population and were designed to examine knowledge and perceptions of participants toward prenatal testing. Analysis of the qualitative data yielded several themes related to prenatal testing: (a) knowledge, (b) confusion, (c) partner's and support persons' opinions, (d) information sharing from providers, (e) psychological benefits, (f) preparation for baby, (g) obstacles, (h) religious influence, and (i) educational tools to assist with understanding. Women's understanding and knowledge of prenatal testing was limited, specifically regarding its purpose, how it works, the benefits, and why it was recommended by their provider. Lack of clarity about why they should take the test and its risks for them and their babies was perceived as something that could impede their acceptance of prenatal testing. All participants agreed that healthcare providers should share more information about prenatal testing in a way that uses 'everyday language' so that they can understand it better. All respondents mentioned that prenatal testing provides information about their baby's health conditions, alleviates their stress and concerns, and psychologically prepares them and their family for what is to come. Identifying ways to increase culturally appropriate education delivered by genetic counselors such as through the adoption of telemedicine and mobile technology can help fill the gap for this underserved population.

published proceedings

  • J Genet Couns

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Page, R. L., Murphey, C., Aras, Y., Chen, L., & Loftin, R.

citation count

  • 4

complete list of authors

  • Page, Robin L||Murphey, Christina||Aras, Yahyahan||Chen, Lei-Shih||Loftin, Ryan

publication date

  • June 2021