Precision Medicine - Blessing or Curse? - with Dr. Abbas Zavar, MD, PhD, MPH

What is Precision Medicine and is it good or Bad?

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Precision Medicine is hailed as the future of medicine, a truly personalized, computerized medicine.

But what exactly does it mean? Is it the greatest thing that will help physicians and their patients make better decisions - or is it a dangerous use of sensitive data just waiting to be exploited???

You be the judge.

Listen to Dr. Abbas Zavar, MD, PhD, MPH and Dr. Christine Sauer discuss the advantages of Precision Medicine - for patients, healthcare providers and hospitals as well as the potential dangers - privacy and data safety concerns .

Is George Orwell's Vision of "1984 -Big Brother is Watching You" finally around the corner?

What we are talking about:

00:26 Dr. Zavar's story

04:00 What is Precision Medicine?

06:15  What are advantages for patients?

08:24 Where does the data come from?

09:29: Advantages for healthcare Providers

11:48  Who makes the treatment decisions? Computer, Physician or Patient?

13:10 What about privacy? Security? Is there a potential for abuse?

16:00 Ethical Issues

17:26 Will there be coercion to participate?

18:54 Do the data need to be "cleaned" before patients can access them?

19:35 Would you take your son with a mental health issue to treatment, if precision medicine was a reality?

21:30 How long will the healthcare data be preserved? Whose data is it anyway?

23:46 What is in the future of Precision Medicine?

24:40: One already available and amazing application of precision medicine for the detection of rare diseases - Can it help find the Zebra among all the Horses (see here to learn more about Zebras or Horses - a Framework for decision making in healthcare)

27:00 What is a realistic timeline for the arrival of precision medicine?

"Precision medicine provides all required data at the point of care and provides a best recommendation for clinicians and patients." - Dr. Abbas Zavar MD PhD MPH

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Dr. Abbas Zavar had been a family doctor for almost 15 years in his former home in Iran. He also did clinical research, health management and worked in other areas of the health care system. he also worked in decision support - a leading position in hospitals or health network. He received his MPH - master of public health - in mental health and addiction. Then he moved to teaching that concept as well as starting the movement towards preventative medicine in Iran. As a doctor, he tried to help the mental health and addiction problems of his patients in his clinic and also at the management level. He received a Ph.D. for his work  in alcohol abuse for the first time in Iran. As you may know, Iran is an Islamic country, so they try to hide and ignore all complications or issues from alcohol abuse. Dr. Zavar conducted the first international conference of alcohol abuse in Iran. He then immigrated to Canada 2015 with his family. 

Since coming to Canada, he started with a certificate at Ryerson University, then moved to a Masters program at the University of Toronto, working with several companies as a clinical data scientist or consultant. And he is now teaching in the same Master program as well as doing research and consulting in the area of precision medicine.

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