06 Mar. 2012 posted by EuroBioForum
What is personalised healthcare? A methodology – enabled by modern genetic, biopharma, diagnostic and ICT technologies that attempts to tailor the treatment to the individual patient. Rather than one-pill-fits-all, doctors use growing knowledge of the human genome, and of other biomarkers of health and disease, to offer targeted prevention measures and to optimise treatment strategies.
No one is suggesting treatment is not already personal, in that healthcare professionals make an assessment of each patient before deciding how to treat them. But the tools of personalised healthcare provide deeper insights and allow treatments to be more finely honed to individual needs.
The end result will be greater effectiveness, fewer side effects, longer and healthier lives, and more sustainable healthcare syste ms. The barriers include technology, financing, cost and change management. Personalised medicine is already in use in a few fields including oncology, cardiology, rare diseases. But introduction and uptake is still slow, not least in Europe.