A Healthier Society
We've been hearing about the rise of consumer driven healthcare and personalized medicine for years. Healthcare teams are working together to treat patients' individual illnesses, as opposed to broad-spectrum approaches to disease. Patients are seeking out facilities and physicians who see them as individuals, and can offer the latest in diagnostics and treatments.
Lately, the industry has seen a rise in companion diagnostic tests. Companies are developing tests to determine what type of disease a patient is suffering from, where it has originated, the most likely path of progression, and how they might react to different medications, to create the best course of treatment.
On a recent episode of The Daily Show With Jon Stuart, guest physician and writer, David Agus, MD, discussed how healthcare has metamorphosed over its history, from a time where we could diagnose the problem, based on what organisms were intruding on the body, and cure illness by treating these organisms. Today, he noted, diseases like cancer, Alzheimer's and heart disease are coming from within the body, interacting with each person's genetic and physical makeup, and don't have a common cure.
Dr. Agus advocates prevention in his book, The End of Illness. With political policy advocating increased health insurance, which would allow more preventative medicine, do you think a growing focus on personalized medicine and prevention will result in a healthier society?