Friday, May 23, 2008

Sorry to Coriell, Stay of the New Jersey Turnpike

Sorry to the attendees at Coriell Yesterday. They were ready to start participating in the Delaware Personalized Medicine Project. I was scheduled to speak on the topic of "Patient Centered Genomic Medicine" Unfortunately, I was stuck on the Turnpike

Don't get in a car wreck in New Jersey. Trust me!

I don't know if anyone reads Medical News Today but it is filled with great information and studies. Today, it is reporting something which is of no surprise to me. From the article

A new report on genetic testing from HHS' Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality calls for the creation of improved public health surveillance databases and health information technologies to monitor the use of gene-based tests and their impact on patient outcomes.

For the government to spend on this testing, they want to it worth it? The problem with incorporating genomics into medicine is many fold. But the problem paying for these tests include a deep seated need for the government to know if what they are doing is cost effective. More importantly, is it leading to better outcomes. This type of study requires years and years of follow up. In addition, this type of study could be very, very expensive.

The report entitled:

Infrastructure to Monitor Utilization and Outcomes of Gene-based Applications: An Assessment, found current public health monitoring systems lack the capability to monitor the use or outcomes of gene-based tests and treatments. Report authors identified several limitations of existing databases and potential solutions to overcome these limitations.

So what makes a good test? What makes a worthwhile test? Time and study will tell. Until then we must rely on the professionals who have access to the current data. Ideally we would have a BBB of genetic testing. Or maybe just some continuing education.

Whichever Candidate you support it is likely that the government will support legislation, funding AND regulation.....Even If Al Gore is heavily invested in DTC genetic testing. Simply because the corporations may have ethics does not mean they are not exactly hippocratic.

The Sherpa Says: Yes it is true. Physicians not knowing about genetics could get them into malpractice. But running a DTC company could get you in trouble with the Fed....I guess an investor just has to pick their poison.....or their car crash


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