Nov 22, 2022
Dr. Noura Abul-Husn is the VP of Genomic Health, and Amy Sturm the Director of Population Health Genomics at 23andMe. With over 13 million customers, 23andMe has built a database that can provide customized and personalized genetic information to individuals that can indicate health predispositions. This kind of information can lead to strategies to reduce the risk of diseases, manage diseases more appropriately, and even prevent diseases.
Noura explains, "Well, 23andMe has been delivering results that could lead to critical healthcare decisions, as you said, for a long time now. And the way people are using that today is typically to bring that information to their trusted healthcare provider to find out what next steps they ought to take based on that information. It could be information that indicates they're at a higher risk for cancer, for example, or for high cholesterol. I think in most cases, we do deliver, from the 23andMe side, information about what that result means for the person, for their health, for their potential risks. And then, they can take action based on that and based on shared decision-making, hopefully, with their healthcare providers."
Amy elaborates, "All doctors want to do the best thing for their patients, but they are honestly limited in many ways. Time, potential lack of reimbursement for having a genetic counseling type conversation, lack of education, and ongoing education to make sure that they are remaining cutting-edge in any genetics or genetics expertise. That's why we're really excited about the acquisition of Lemonade Health to build out genomic healthcare more broadly under 23andMe. As Noura said, 23andMe has been giving back really important health-related genomic risk results for years that really do need to be taken seriously to prevent diseases like heart disease and cancer."
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