Interview with Juliana M.H. Lee, FHGSA – Genetic Counselor

Juliana M.H. Lee

Ms Lee is a genetic counselor certified by Human Genetics Society of Australasia (HGSA) and a registered & licensed counselor with the Malaysian Board of Counselor. As a pioneer genetic counselor in Malaysia, she has taken on various roles that has contributed to the development of genetic counselling practice in Malaysia and across Southeast Asia.  With the experiences gathered over the years, she set-up GCA (https://gc-asia.com/) in 2015. Apart from conducting genetic counselling direct to patients, she also consults organisations that require training and support services.

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

She obtained B.Sc.Hons. in Molecular Biology (Genetics) from the National University of Malaysia. She then furthered her studies in the Graduate Diploma in Genetic Counselling at University of Melbourne in 2003. In 2009, she graduated with Master of Counselling from University Malaya.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE:

  • Ms Lee began practice in 2004 at University Malaya Medical Centre in Kuala Lumpur as a Medical Social Worker (Associate Genetic Counsellor) conducting genetic counselling and support services to families affected with genetic conditions.
  • She worked with Professor Dr Meow-Keong Thong, the first clinical geneticist in Malaysia and has managed cases that ranged from pediatric genetics, inborn error of metabolism, rare diseases, reproductive genetics to hereditary cancer. 
  • In 2014, she joined the private industry as a consultant genetic counsellor to a Singapore company introducing the latest genetic tests in Southeast Asia such as NIPT, expanded carrier testing, cancer panel testing and somatic cancer testing. This role gave rise to opportunities for her to provide training and genetic counselling support across Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines and Vietnam.

OTHER RECOGNITION’S

  • Throughout her career, she has presented numerous talks and published articles to promote the role of genetic counsellors, highlighting the need to develop a career pathway and to train more genetic counsellors in Malaysia.
  • Apart from lecturing in the Masters of Science (Genetic Counselling) in National University of Malaysia, she is also the Secretary of Genetic Counselling Society Malaysia (GCSM), President of the Professional Society of Genetic Counselors in Asia (PSGCA), Auditor for Asia Pacific Society of Human Genetics (APSHG) and Member of the National Rare Disease Committee, Ministry of Health Malaysia.

Role play part 2 of the interview will be posted later!!

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