Healthcare organization-education partnerships and career ladder programs for health care workers.
Children’s National Health System (CNHS) is a not-for-profit pediatric hospital that employs around twenty genetic counselors in a range of specialties, including clinical pediatric, neurology, fetal medicine, research, and laboratory. CNHS lacked a structured system of advancement for their genetic counselors; therefore, a formal career ladder was proposed by the genetic counselors based on years of experience, responsibility, and job performance. This career ladder utilized monetary, academic, and seniority incentives to encourage advancement and continue employment at CNHS. The creation and ultimate approval of the career ladder required direct input from genetic counselors, Department Chairs, and Human Resource personnel. The establishment of a genetic counselor career ladder at CNHS will hopefully benefit the profession of genetic counselors as a whole and allow other facilities to create and maintain their own career ladder to meet the needs of the growing, competitive, field of genetic counseling.