England’s Chief Medical Officer says the NHS must deliver her “genomic dream” within five years, making it routine to offer DNA testing to ensure the best treatments are offered to patients. Dr Sarah Lotzof provides genomic testing to patients at her clinic, The Genetics Consultants (operated out of Chase Lodge Hospital), to improve their care and says the difference is ground breaking:
“Personalised medicine not population medicine is the clear way forward and will revolutionise our care. Currently, Doctors have to guess which medicine out of a similar group to give to a patient and at which dose. They do this without knowing exactly what the side effects will be.
This guesswork can be particularly dangerous in the realms of adolescent mental health, but we have the ability to change this as well as revolutionise other areas including cancer care. We are not just a population; our genes make us unique and individual and this must be reflected in mainstream medicine. In addition to the care benefit, there is a significant cost benefit from getting it right the first time.
Additionally, we can actually start using medicine as a truly preventative tool when we use human genomic testing. My clinic has been testing patients over the last 18 months and it has dramatically improved their quality of life.”