March 24, 2016
There is much talk these days in the medical world about precision medicine. But what does it mean for public health? President Obama announced the Precision Medicine Initiative over a year ago in his State of the Union address on January 20, 2015. As defined by the White House, "the Precision Medicine Initiative will pioneer a new model of patient-powered research that promises to accelerate biomedical discoveries and provide clinicians with new tools, knowledge, and therapies to select which treatments will work best for which patients." The Initiative was launched with a 215 million dollar investment including 130 million for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish a national voluntary cohort of patients to participate in various research efforts and 70 million for the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to identify genomic drivers in cancer and apply that knowledge in the development of more effective treatments.