Power to the Patient

There’s a growing trend in healthcare where individuals are taking more control of their health. This manifests itself in many ways. From personal health record apps for your smartphone, to popular workout regimens that promote wholesale lifestyle changes, the course is set. In politics, laws have been passed to protect patient rights to access their own health information and test results. The tendency of individuals to take charge of their care has grown in tandem with technology that makes it a convenience. As science uncovers more hard facts about how nutrition and exercise are not “one size fits all,” the trend accelerates. Genomics stands to be a big part of this shift as it is the epitome of individual health.

Texting by Jhaymesisviphotography, on Flickr
Texting by Jhaymesisviphotography, on Flickr

Patients are increasingly empowered to choose alternative treatments in their healthcare, and continue to take a more active role in maintaining their well-being. The ability to access and manage vast amounts of information at our fingertips has caused a surge of popular personal health record apps to flood the market. These mobile tools provide the depth of information and record keeping necessary to stay on top of your health. This is a crucial concept; for the first time in history, non-doctors have the capability to make well-informed decisions about their own health. This is a great thing. A health-conscious population helps patients and care providers alike.

The power of genomics in personal health records is far-reaching. A comprehensive test and analysis of your individual DNA can be presented side by with other metrics like calorie consumption, exercise schedule, medical history, vital sign tracking, and test results in order to better contextualize this information. By framing ongoing health metrics in individual biological background, we can help people understand what lifestyle changes may have the most positive impact. If you knew you had a high risk of developing diabetes in the next five years, do you think it would be easier to cut processed sugar out of your diet? Using genomics as part of a personal health record allows those interested in taking an active role in their health to make the most of their critical health decisions.

When a patient gets sequenced through New Amsterdam Genomics, we provide a report to both physicians and patients. We enable ordinary people to educate themselves on the impact their genome has on their health. And because the test must be ordered by a doctor, this gives patients an opportunity to work with their physician in order to implement the best preventative care strategies. Empowering patients is more than a fad of modern healthcare, it is a substantial future. New Amsterdam Genomics is committed to that future and continuing the progress of genomic health for the masses.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Ashley says:

    Excellent piece, reminds me of the TED Talk about the importance of empowering the patient!

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