Cancer Risk Assessment and Genetic Counseling


If you are concerned about your risk of developing cancer based on family history or personal medical history, our team of specialists can help you assess and manage your potential — or existing — cancer risk.

RWJUH Hamilton's HOPE Program (Hereditary Oncology Prevention and Evaluation) addresses the unique needs of high-risk cancer patients and families.

What Does the HOPE Program Provide?

  • Access to top cancer specialists, in a setting close to home
  • Up-to-the-minute medical and genetic information
  • Genetic counseling and testing on site at the Cancer Center at RWJUH Hamilton
  • Social support and resources for those with cancer risk
  • Personalized medical options and strategies
  • Discussions about federal and state laws that protect you from genetic discrimination

Are You at Risk?

The HOPE Program is designed for anyone concerned about hereditary cancer risk. If you answer yes to one or more of the following questions, we can help.

  • Do you have relatives diagnosed with cancer at an age younger than 50?
  • Do you have several relatives with the same type of cancer, or related cancers such as breast and ovarian cancers or colon and endometrial cancers?
  • Are there at least two generations affected with cancer and/or pre-cancerous lesions?
  • Do you have a relative with a rare or hereditary cancer such as pancreatic cancer or ovarian cancer?
  • Is there a personal history of several different types of cancer?

Schedule an Appointment

To learn about your risk or to schedule an appointment, call 844-226-2376.

How Can the HOPE Program Help You?

  • Risk assessment. Based on your family history, medical factors, environmental factors, reproductive history and lifestyle choices, the HOPE Program provides up-to-the-minute information about your individual cancer risk. When appropriate, on-site genetic testing is available to assess your cancer risk.
  • Genetic counseling. Board certified genetic counselors meet with you to discuss your risk factors as they relate to your family history, as well as health management strategies and options. If you pursue genetic testing, you will receive comprehensive pre- and post-test counseling.
  • On-site genetic testing. If your family history suggests an inherited cancer risk, genetic testing may be available to further define your risk and the risk to your family. Comprehensive pre- and post-test counseling is provided.
  • Education. The HOPE Program is a tremendous educational resource, offering information about different risk factors for cancer, inherited cancer risks, genetic testing and health management options.
  • Physical exam. This may be required at the time of your visit or you may be referred to a health care specialist.
  • Follow-up plan. Based on your risk assessment, the team designs a personalized monitoring plan for you and your primary care physician. You may also choose to continue to be seen at RWJUH Hamilton's cancer center.
  • Clinical studies. The HOPE Program offers access to appropriate clinical studies that evaluate new methods for the early detection of cancer, cancer prevention, cancer treatment and genetic testing. You will learn about eligibility, benefits and limitations of available trials.
  • Psychosocial support. Social workers and genetic counselors help you address the unique issues involved with assessing and managing your cancer risk.

HOPE Program Team

  • Physician specializing in medical oncology
  • Geneticist/genetic counselor
  • Program coordinator
  • Social worker
  • Surgeon

Patient Stories

  • “The top three things that bring us back to RWJUH Hamilton are the physicians, the nurses and the atmosphere, says MaryAnn. “

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  • “I have her butterfly pin on the table next to my bed as a constant reminder to stop dwelling on what is wrong in the world and let in the light. And as I learned recently, the name Lucinda means ‘light.’”

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  • I did part of my nursing training there in 2013, Marcia says. I knew RWJUH Hamilton was one of the best hospitals in New Jersey.

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Patient Stories

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