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Generation genome

Professor Mike Parker and Dr Sarah Wordsworth are co-authors of chapters in the 2016 Chief Medical Officer’s annual report, ‘Generation Genome’ published today.

In her eighth independent report to government the Chief Medical Officer Professor Dame Sally Davies explores how genomics can improve health and prevent ill-health. The 256 page report covers a broad spectrum of topics spanning diagnosis, screening, prevention and therapeutics to an analysis of the ethical, legal and social implications of genomics.

Sarah Wordsworth, is co-author of chapter 14 which looks at the economics of sequencing and Mike Parker is co-author of chapter 16 ‘Ethics and the social contract for genomics in the NHS,’ the final chapter which draws together the important requirements that need to be in place if genomic medicine is to be ethically and socially acceptable.

Whole genome sequencing can reveal errors in DNA code and genomic medicine which tailors care based on an individual’s unique genetic code, is transforming patient care in the health service. To date over 31,000 NHS patients have had their entire genetic code sequenced. Today’s report explores how genomics might become integrated into routine clinical practice. The CMO’s recommendations include access to regularly updated information for clinicians on when and how to initiate genetic testing and parity of access to genetic testing, diagnosis and advice for patients across England.