Norwich Union Healthcare launches online health tree to help customers understand family conditions and illnesses.
Of the GPs surveyed, 88 per cent told researchers for Norwich Union Healthcare their patients need to know more about hereditary conditions that run in their family.
Also, more than half of doctors say they dont feel confident that the information is accurate.
The Healthcare Heritage study from Norwich Union Healthcare also found 35 per cent admit they would not feel confident about answering their GP knowledgeably when asked about illnesses that ran in their family.
Dr Ann Robinson, GP, says: “We often know more about our friends health than we do about our own grandparents, aunts and uncles. But a detailed knowledge of your own familys health problems could help to save your life. Most of the common, serious illnesses are potentially inherited. If you know you have a family tendency to develop Alzheimers, heart disease, diabetes or some types of cancer, you can get specific advice about how to prevent the disease yourself or at least pick it up in the early stages. There is no advantage to being an ostrich about your family health history.”
The study of more than 200 GPs and 1,000 adults was commissioned by Norwich Union Healthcare as it launches its new online health tree to provide people with a useful tool to record their ancestors health history and find out more information about hereditary illnesses.
Norwich Union Healthcare clinical development manager Dr Doug Wright says: “Most of us have very limited knowledge about our familys health history. We want to encourage people to generate and update their family history to promote a sense of responsibility and encourage individuals to play a part in their own health care management. Being able to provide this information can help our GPs advise us better either in making a diagnosis or guiding us on health risks.”