Matching scientific discovery with personalized treatment plans to help patients has a new sense of immediacy. However, a lot has to happen to hammer out data gathering and sharing capabilities. Leading professionals share their thoughts about current projects, how the 21st Century Cures Act is fueling initiatives around the country and what you can expect to see in the very near future.
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The ONC says pilots at Harvard and Intermountain, as well as work with NIH and FDA, are already advancing the goal of accelerating scientific discovery for personalized treatment plans. The convergence of federal funding under the 21st Century Cures Act, which allocates money for the National Institutes of Health to expand PMI, and work that ONC is undertaking with NIH, FDA, HHS Office for Civil Rights and Veterans Affairs, will drive safe and secure health information exchange to advance precision medicine initiatives.
Eric Dishman has been called the "Face of Precision Medicine." As director of the All of Us Research Program at the National Institutes of Health, he is leading the cohort creation for one of the biggest and most ambitious research initiatives ever: the Precision Medicine Initiative launched by President Obama in 2015. Dishman's goal is to enlist 1 million Americans – "from all walks of life and parts of the country" – as a representative group that can help researchers draw new insights into the ways genomics vary across diverse patient populations.
The results of Intermountain’s precision medicine program, which has reduced cancer treatment costs and improved patient outcomes, includes a patient’s journey from a biopsy or FFPE and pathology review. The process should take two weeks or less from patient entry to results.
The grand vision of precision medicine is to democratize research and apply more brainpower per problem to the most vexing medical issues. Before we can get there, though, a lot has to happen to hammer out data gathering and sharing capabilities, retool the healthcare system so it’s much more adaptable to change and ultimately modernize IT infrastructure to support precision medicine and all the data that entails.
Penn Medicine has positioned itself at the forefront of genomics and immunotherapy, but capitalizing on the promise of personalized medicine has required extensive investments in the medical center's IT infrastructure. This includes work to improve integration with its electronic medical record, use analytics tools to mine unstructured data and offer real-time decision support.
Genomics and artificial intelligence are advancing so fast right now that hospitals, payers, academic medical centers and government health entities need a framework to put those emerging technologies into practice quickly to manage to maintain and deliver precision medicine information. Speakers at Boston’s Precision Medicine Summit in June see a genomic future fueled by startups whose innovations outpace EHR vendors.
Lifestyle, economic and environmental factors have huge effects on population health – and how electronic health records need to do a better job incorporating data about social determinants. The question, then, is how to harness precision medicine tools that can make social determinants of health a core focus. That won't happen without more robust connectivity – especially for those underserved populations that need it most.
An adjunct to the ICG100 Comprehensive Cancer panel, which tests 162 genes, the ICG100 ONCO Focus Panel requires less DNA. This next-generation sequencing from Intermountain Precision Genomics service test performs genomic analysis on five genes. According to Intermountain, the test can provide valuable analysis and clinical utility for stage IV cancer patients when only a small tissue sample is available.