To achieve truly personalized cancer care, our healthcare system should integrate technology with the human touch.

President John Kennedy’s moonshot mission in the 1960s that landed a man on the moon has become an inspiration for conquering cancer.

Achieving universal cancer care requires precision and personalized medicine, as well as integrated care, a multi-dimensional approach to ensure patients in need are aware of and have access to life-saving treatments.

Precision and personalized medicine, driven by big data analytics and artificial intelligence, cannot completely replace human interactions, especially the relationship between patients and caregivers. This relationship can be marked by confusion, anxiety, and helplessness, all a result of the overwhelming and complex medical information that must be understood, among other factors. Physicians spend an increasing amount of time on continual education and administrative paperwork, decreasing the amount and quality of time they can spend with their patients.

To achieve truly personalized care, our healthcare system should integrate technology with the human touch. Patients should understand the basics of precision and personalized medicine and feel empowered to make decisions regarding how their data will be used for themselves and to save the lives of others. Only through joining forces and ensuring patient-centric healthcare can we become masters of the cancer universe.

Oscar Segurado, MD, PhD, Director of Medic Affairs Consulting LLC, has extensive global experience covering oncology, immunology and molecular biology in academia and industry settings.

This is an excerpt of an article originally published in The Hill on February 6, 2007

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