SingHealth Duke-NUS Genomic Medicine Centre (SDGMC) has been established to bring clinical genomics to institutions across the SingHealth cluster. Clinical genomics is the use of information stored in our DNA, i.e. our genes, to understand the mechanism underlying the individual's disease. The improved understanding of genomics, triggered by the rapid decline in cost of sequencing, has fuelled the development of therapies that would be most beneficial to the individual. This has helped us to move from "the one size fits all" approach to medicine, to a more individualised form of precision medicine.
The Centre will bring together expertise from the various SingHealth institutions and Duke-NUS Medical School to leverage on advanced genomic technologies to improve diagnostics, therapeutics and health outcomes. The SDGMC aims to work closely with other subspecialists across SingHealth institutes to provide multidisciplinary care in a seamless and timely manner.
The SDGMC will boost genomic expertise and standardise clinical pathways across medical specialties in SingHealth. Specialty genetics clinics will be set up for patients with genetic disorders or conditions with a suspected genetic basis, in SingHealth hospitals and institutions. In these clinics, patients and their family members, undergo risk assessment, genetic testing and genetic counselling by a team of qualified specialists, geneticists and genetic counsellors.
Besides enhancing patient care, the SDGMC will also focus on research and education to advance genomics care. A registry of genetic disorders will be established with clinical data that is valuable for genomic epidemiological studies. The registry will help healthcare professionals and researchers understand trends, treatment plans and patient outcomes to better manage genetic disorders. Additionally, the SDGMC will work with researchers to discover new biomarkers and genetic disorders for improved diagnosis and novel treatment.
The introduction of a genetics education programme aims to equip medical professionals, who do not specialise in genetics, with basic knowledge of the use of genetics in clinical practice. This will help them better identify, and make appropriate referrals for, patients with genetic conditions.
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