Table 1 A summary of recommendations from the semi-structured interviews that were made independently by a majority of interviewees (n ≥ 5). A full table of all recommendations is in the Supplementary Materials.

From: Recommendations for designing genetic test reports to be understood by patients and non-specialists

GroupingRecommendationnDetail
Comm. styleMake reports easier for non-specialists to understand9Use layman’s terms, avoid jargon, most reports are incomprehensible even to (non-specialist) medical professionals
Structure & appearanceConsider the structure and appearance of the document9The structure and appearance of the document affect understanding, and ease of reading
Structure & appearanceMake the result prominent9The result of the test should stand out and be easily found within the document
Structure & appearanceKeep technical test details separate9Put technical details such as test methodology into a separate section
ContentProvide an ‘actions to be taken’ section8Include a section of recommendations and concrete next steps
ContentProvide sources of further information and support8Provide sources of authoritative information, especially on the condition, communicating the result to others and obtaining support including genetic counselling and peer support
ContentProvide a ‘what this result means’ section7Explain what the implications of the result are (diagnosis, risks, treatment, family)
ContentEnsure the result wording is unambiguous6Make the result as unambiguous as possible. Use plain language
Structure & appearanceUse colour to make things clear and easy to read6Colours help with understanding and appearance of document
Structure & appearanceKeep reports as short and simple as possible6Avoid dense blocks of text and lengthy reports as much as possible
Structure & appearanceDon’t dilute the main message5Don’t intersperse key messages with genetics explainers or technical details
Comm. styleProvide patients with all information5Patients should receive all of the information resulting from the test including technical details
Structure & appearancePresent result in neutral terms5Don’t use ‘positive’ or ‘negative’, or colour-code results. Aim rather for a statement of fact.