The Code Talker Award was created as a way to pay tribute to a genetic counselor for the impact he or she has on a patient and family. Genetic counselors are specially trained professionals who help people cope with, understand, and respond to genetic conditions. They are on the frontline, standing alongside patients and their families as they try to make very difficult treatment decisions. They serve as translators, interpreting complicated medical information at critical moments in an understandable way. The Code Talker Award honors excellence in patient care among practitioners of this unique profession. This prestigious award is presented in concert with the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) and serves as a way to distinguish those who provide exceptional and irreplaceable service.
Nominations are accepted via essay submission from patients, caregivers, and peers. The essay should tell a story, sharing details about the compassion, expertise, and helpfulness a genetic counselor had for a patient or his or her family. The awards committee will choose three finalists based on the patient care provided and the impact of the genetic counselor on the patient and family. Finalist genetic counselors, the nominating essayists, plus one guest each, will receive roundtrip airfare and a two-night stay in Salt Lake City, Utah, where they will be honored at a reception during the NSGC Conference in November 2019. The essays will be read aloud, and one genetic counselor will be named the Code Talker of the Year in recognition of his or her service to patients.
Share your story! We are now accepting essays for the 2019 Code Talker Award.
Tell us how your genetic counselor impacted your healthcare — or those of a loved one — and your genetic counselor might just win the Code Talker Award!
The genetic counselors who are named as finalists, the essayists who nominated them, plus one guest each, will receive round-trip airfare and a two-night stay in Salt Lake City, Utah where they will be honored at a reception during the NSGC’s Annual Education Conference in November 2019. One of the three finalists will receive the 2019 Code Talker Award.
Identifying the top three was incredibly difficult, but the following genetic counselors stood out. Click on the name of the winner and each finalist below to read the amazing essay nominating them for the Code Talker Award.
Nominated by James McGowan
Hannah L. Scanga, MS, LCGC, is a genetic counselor at the UPMC Eye Center at the UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. She specializes in ophthalmic genetics, seeing patients from infancy through adulthood. Scanga received her master’s degree in genetic counseling in 2010 from Case Western Reserve University.
Nominated by Janice Edwards
Margaret Au, MBE, MS, CGC, is a genetic counselor at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She specializes in genetic counseling in a pediatric setting. Au received her genetic counseling degree in 2008 from the University of Cincinnati. She also has a master’s degree in bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania.