CMO for England: Genomics will shorten 'diagnostic odyssey' for patients with rare disease

England's CMO Dr. Dame Sally Davies outlined what she calls the "the genomic dream" in her fifth annual report of the CMO, titled "Generation Genome."

For Dr. Davies, the genomic dream entails using advances in technology to deliver faster and more accurate diagnoses and treatment. Genomics, some experts argue, will improve healthcare outcomes by targeting treatments more effectively.

"Genomic medicine has the potential to save costs and improve quality of care by targeting treatment, maximizing benefit and reducing side effects," she wrote in the report. "For patients with rare diseases, it can shorten their 'diagnostic odyssey' helping to identify therapeutic options faster and improve outcomes."

To "make this dream a reality across England," Dr. Davies highlighted the importance of instituting national standards, centralizing laboratory services and addressing data protection concerns. "The more people have contributed their data, the better the results for any one individual," she noted.

"Genomics is not tomorrow," she wrote. "It's here today. I believe genomic services should be available to more patients, whilst being a cost-effective service in the NHS."

Click here to view the full report.

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