What Is Precision Medicine And Can You Afford It?

What Is Precision Medicine And Can You Afford It?

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When you feel unwell, you will most likely go to see a doctor if resting at home and taking over-the-counter medication didn’t work. Your doctor will suggest a treatment after checking your symptoms and ask you to come back a few days later if the symptoms don’t go away.

The doctor’s diagnosis is based on years of training and experience to know what works for most patients with the same symptoms that you have. For most of us, that treatment will have done its job and we get back to our daily lives. 

But what if the treatment doesn’t work or you end up feeling even worse than before the treatment? For some patients, they may need to take one experimental treatment after another and each time, the side effects may be very bad. 

Today there is a better way to get the treatment you need instead of going through this painful process of trial and error – in the form of medical treatment that is tailored to your unique genetic makeup.

Precision medicine is going beyond the one-size-fits-all approach

But what exactly is precision medicine? In the simplest of terms, it is a form of medical treatment that is based on your individual genetic makeup, lifestyle, and environment.

What precision medicine does is to take all the information that is unique to you to accurately diagnose your illness and find the treatment that will work best for you.

precision medicine infographic

Sources: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0033062016300135, https://www.cancer.gov/research/areas/treatment/pmi-oncology

Almost all of us know someone who has been diagnosed with cancer as well as the side effects they suffer when getting treatment for cancer, such as the aftermath of chemotherapy, or radiation treatment. Therefore, identifying the most suitable way of cancer treatment is important to increase survival rate and help patients better cope with the treatment.

With precision medicine, a lot of this trial-and-error can be avoided, thanks to the information contained in your genetic makeup.

How can you afford precision medicine

However, as good as precision medicine might sound, the truth is that it’s also very expensive.

In oncology, a field of medicine where precision medicine has taken off, healthcare professionals can now study a tumor’s genetic profile to find mutations that can predict a good or bad response to medication, and the process is called genomic testing.

The caveat? Genomic testing costs range from over a thousand ringgit to tens of thousands of ringgit depending on what you are testing to find out. This added to the cost of other forms of treatments, and the medication a patient will have to take, will make up an astronomical amount that most people can’t afford.

Which is why Prudential Malaysia’s partnership with healthcare providers to make precision medicine more accessible to more Malaysians is a very welcome move.

Here’s how Prudential is opening up access to precision medicine for all Malaysians

  • Two decades after the Human Genome Project mapped out the full set of human’s genes, Prudential is now offering access to advanced tools to help healthcare professionals identify and indicate elevated risk, and also identify optimum cancer treatments.
  • Partnered with AstraZeneca and Pantai Premier Pathology to broaden access to precision medicine at an affordable cost.
  • Providing coverage to the costs for clinically required genomic testing and targeted cancer treatment. This coverage also allows physicians to prescribe clinically suitable treatments and tests from other pharmaceutical companies and laboratories.
  • Reshape cancer treatment landscape for Malaysians to receive advanced treatment.
And to make the deal even sweeter, Prudential Malaysia’s coverage of precision medicine is automatically included within their new and existing insurance plans, with no additional charges.

Helping Malaysians live with confidence

It’s easy to see why the next step in healthcare lies in precision medicine, as customised treatment plans can do wonders to help patients recover from their disease, especially cancer.

With Prudential Malaysia, this option for precision medicine is open for everyone. Contact Prudential Malaysia’s Wealth Planners to learn more about the medical plans offered here.

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