Improving health through the use of genomic data
In the next few years, the use of genomic data in healthcare will rapidly increase. In the future, decisions regarding the prevention and treatment of diseases will be increasingly based on an individual's genetic makeup.
Everyone must have an equal opportunity to benefit from genomic data. Therefore, a working group of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has drawn up a proposal for a National Genome Strategy. The strategy was published in spring 2015. It sets key measures for ensuring that, by 2020, genomic data will be effectively used in healthcare and in the promotion of health and wellbeing.
Personal healthcare will restrain healthcare costs
An individual can benefit from genomic data in following ways, for example:
- Better possibilities for individuals to promote their own health.
- It will be possible to diagnose diseases more accurately.
- The treatment or medicine to be used can be chosen depending on its effectiveness for the individual in question.
- We can presume that preventive methods and individual treatments can be developed for the most common diseases.
- Screenings can be targeted more precisely than before, focusing on the person’s susceptibility to a certain disease.
When individual wellbeing increases through more accurate diagnostics and treatment and through more effective prevention of diseases, this personalised healthcare also helps to restrain healthcare costs.
Significant new research and business activities can be created in Finland
In addition to having each Finn benefit from advances in science, Finland is fully capable to become an internationally sought-after collaborative partner in genome research and in business activities in the field of genomics.
Finland's strengths include
- a high standard of healthcare
- uniform treatment practices
- reliable healthcare registers
- high-quality biobank sample collections
- a long tradition of high-quality genetic research, and
- the willingness of the Finnish population to participate in scientific research.
Additionally, Finns are genetically relatively homogenous, which provides special opportunities to combine genomic and health data. Finland is also one of the world's leading developers of health technology. Therefore, significant new research and business activities can be developed in Finland.
Goals of the genome strategy