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Alanna K Rahm, PhD, MS

Clinical Investigator I

Genetic Counselor, Oncology Services


Center for Health Research
100 North Academy Avenue
Danville, PA 17822
Phone: 570-214-5093

Genomic Medicine Institute
100 North Academy Avenue
Danville, PA 17822
Phone: 570-214-5093


MS Biophysics and Genetics (Genetic Counseling), University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, 1995-1997
PhD Health and Behavioral Sciences, University of Colorado, Denver, 2005-2010


Genetics, Cancer, Health Services, Education, Health Information Technology


Qualitative research, Dissemination and Implementation Science, Direct-to-Consumer genetic testing, Risk Communication, Physician/ Patient education


As a genetic counselor with over 17 years’ experience in Health Services Research, my overall research interests are the implementation of genomic technologies into clinical practice through embedded research programs. I am particularly interested in studying and promoting the integration of tools such as family history collection in the EMR, optimizing implementation of genomic technology through quality improvement methods, implementation science, physician education, member education and prevention programs, the utilization of web-based tools to provide physician and patient education about genetic risk, and studies on the acceptability of and communication needs around whole genome sequencing in the clinical environment.

I have been an active member in the HMO Research Network and Cancer Research Network for the past 12 years, during which time I have co-chaired the Family History Special Interest Group and currently participate in the Communication and Dissemination Working Group. My dissertation research on patient and provider knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about Direct-to-Consumer genetic testing was also funded through CRN pilot funds. In 2011 I was one of the first trainees in the NIH Training for Dissemination and Implementation in Health (TIDRH) where I gained significant expertise in dissemination and implementation science. I am also a member of the EPIC genomics working group to facilitate the utilization of genetic information in the EPIC medical record system.

I also have extensive experience in qualitative research methods, quality improvement methods, behavioral science theories, cancer communication, and medical education improvement. It is my goal at Geisinger to continue to utilize my extensive expertise in these many areas to utilize current and new genetic technologies for the benefit of our providers and patients.


Harris JN, Liljestrand P, Alexander GL, Goddard KAB, Kauffman T, Kolevska T, McCarty C, O’Neill S, Pawlowski P, Rahm A, Williams A, Somkin CP. (2013). Oncologists’ attitudes toward KRAS testing: a multisite study. Cancer Medicine , 2(6): 881–888 .   

Cross D, Rahm AK*, Kauffman TL, Webster J, Le AQ, Feigelson HS, Alexander G, Meier P, Onitilo A, Pawloski PA, Williams AE, Honda S, Daida Y, McCarty CA, Goddard KA. (2013, Dec). Under-utilization of Lynch Syndrome Screening in a multisite study of colorectal Cancer patients. Genetics in Medicine , 15(12), 933-40.   

Rahm AK, Wrenn M, Carroll N, Feigelson HS. (2013, Oct). Biobanking for research: a survey of patient attitudes and understanding. Journal of Community Genetics , 4(4):445-50.   

Rahm AK, Feigelson HS, Wagner N, Le AQ, Halterman E, Cornish N, Dearing JW. (2012, June). Perception of Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Testing and Direct-To-Consumer Advertising of Genetic Tests among Members of a Large Managed Care Organization. Genetic Counseling , 21(3):448-61.   

Rolnick SJ, Rahm AK, Jackson JM, Nekhlyudov L, Goddard KAB, Field T, McCarty C, Nakasato C, Roblin D, Anderson CP, Valdez R. (2011, June). Barriers in Identification and referral to genetic counseling for familial cancer risk: the perspective of genetic service providers. Journal of Genetic Counseling , 20(3):314-22.