Scientists have Envisioned a time in medicine when patients no longer had to go through trial and error to determine which drugs would help treat or cure them when they were ill – and that era could soon come, because the hospital And medical centers are collecting information on patients and sequencing their genes.
“These research experiments have been done in the past to try to understand the disease better,” Jonathan Sheldon, global vice president of Oracle Health Sciences, said in an interview with US News. “We still need to do this, but we are in a situation right now in which some academic medical centers are using that information to make clinical decisions.”
He explained that along with changes in the way patients are cared for, there are also some changes in the way medical records are shared and preserved, which would allow more health care providers to do so, and how to be the most effective providers. Huh . These recommendations were outlined in a white paper, “From Development to Revolution: Building the Genomic Structure of the 21st Century, “Released on Thursday, and was followed by a panel discussion about policy changes. The event, in which Sheldon was a panelist, was held at the Capitol Visitor Center in Washington.
Individual hospitals and medical centers are beginning some of these studies. Brian Wells, Associate Vice President of Health Technology and Academic Computing at Penn, shared in the panel that researchers are investigating how some patients metabolize drugs so that doctors can do that job correctly. One of the studies will show how quickly smokers metabolize nicotine, and will help guide doctors in determining whether to stop smoking patches or Chantix, a pill.
In health care circles, precision medicine is a Topics most talked about The year since President Barack Obama mentioned it in his Union address. The human genome has been sequenced since 2003, but over the years this data remains mostly stable, except for a handful of academic medical centers or genetic testing facilities.
“It will be possible in the coming decade that genomic data will play a role in health care decisions,” said Josh New, a policy analyst at the Center for Data Innovation and a moderator of Thursday’s panel.
However, efforts have been underway for some time to prepare for the age of precision medicine. In 2009, through an economic stimulus package, the federal government funded $ 19 billion to hospitals and individual doctors who adopted electronic medical records. The move worked extensively: Before the passage of the stimulus bill, 9.4 percent of hospitals had adopted the technology. By 2014, the participation rate reached 75.5 percent, according to a Data brief Compiled by the Government’s Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.
This initiative was ultimately to form the basis of taking into account not only the clinical history of a patient, but also his genetic code. However, these records exist largely in a void. For the most part, one hospital or provider cannot send data to another, leaving patients with the same cumbersome procedure when their records were kept in paper files.
“As long as we can deal with the differences in clinical data, genetic data will make no sense,” Sheldon says.
Experts say that modernizing laws that protect patients’ privacy and safety will greatly improve health providers’ and hospitals’ ability to track patient information and exchange with others. Much has changed since these laws were enacted: patients can keep their records on their cell phones, iPads, or laptops – devices that simply did not exist or were not widespread when laws were passed.
Legislation under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, where and with whom health care information can be shared. Although legislation was passed to protect people’s privacy and to ensure that their medical information was not compromised, many experts say the data needed to be more accessible to achieve better results is.
“How are we able to access the data if we are under all these regulatory requirements?” Asked on Thursday’s panel by Enroz Berrandt, vice president of analytics and information at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
New York Genome Center Deputy Scientific Director of Informatics Toby Bloom said on the panel that one way of restructuring medical records would be to give more control to patients. Patients said, if they needed to be able to provide their records for medical research, if they wanted something like that. “I don’t believe in getting rid of all the rules,” she said. “I just want the right rules for patients.”
While precision medicines promise to find treatments for individual ailments, Dr. Dean of Boston University’s School of Public Health, Drs. Sandro Galia believes that other major issues in public health will take a back seat.
In an interview with US News, he said, “The major challenge is that the genomic medicine agenda is for the development of highly specialized, highly specialized drugs rather than an approach to make populations healthier.”
For example, genetics will not solve the socio-economic and racial disparities that exist in the US in terms of problems that affect certain populations – including obesity, teen pregnancy, or type 2 diabetes. Any of these, Gallia indicates, may be influenced by precision medicine, but by living conditions and environmental factors that can be dealt with through health-related initiatives.
“We need careful judicious repetition of our enthusiasm with personalized medicine to balance it with the health of the population,” he says.