NHS England’s senior geneticist has suggested nurses are key to ensuring patients remain central to care, as genomic technologies become increasingly important in healthcare.
Professor Sir John Burn told delegates at the chief nursing officer for England’s summit that “everywhere you look in medicine, genomics is going to be there”.
“Nurses are perhaps of all of us best placed to see the person rather than the patient”
He said: “I think one of the things for the nursing community is that they are perhaps of all of us [clinicians] best placed to see the person rather than the patient or the statistic in public health or how much it costs to treat them.
“And I think the responsibility in this whole exercise for the nursing profession is to constantly remind all of us, there are people on the end of this – there are real people who are going to suffer if we do this wrong, but also people who are going to suffer if we don’t do this at all,” he added.
The increasing understanding of the genome and how it works is regarded as a highly promising area in healthcare, making it possible to identify individuals susceptible to particular diseases as well as creating more tailored medicines.