I saw this on Ancestry.com’s blog today – In the COVID-19 Era and Beyond: Using Genomic Science to Help Improve Lives: https://blogs.ancestry.com/ancestry/2020/07/14/in-the-covid-19-era-and-beyond-using-genomic-science-to-help-improve-lives/.
This week Ancestry released results of a survey we commissioned to understand how consumers view their health during the COVID-19 pandemic. Not surprisingly, because of the pandemic, the survey found that 45% of parents are concerned about protecting their family’s health, and 42% of parents worry about the lasting implications of the virus on their family’s health.
Perhaps more than any time in recent memory, people are honing in on the importance of taking proactive actions to protect their health and their family’s health. This applies to not only concerns specific to COVID-19 but also other health issues, such as genetic risks. Almost half of all Americans — and nearly 60 percent of parents — said the pandemic has increased their interest in understanding their possible genetic health risks. Top reasons include:
- Preparing for future potential health issues
- Catching health issues early on
- Making lifestyle changes now that could reduce risk factors for health conditions for which they may be susceptible
As a physician and father, I understand these perspectives. Especially during these unprecedented times, many of us have certainly spent time wondering about how the “unknown” will impact our family’s health. The pandemic has underscored what we already knew: we want to protect our family. It brings me a measure of comfort that Ancestry is working to use science and technology to improve lives, and is working to be a valuable scientific partner in healthcare’s worldwide effort to urgently find new ways to identify and prevent diseases.–snip–
Looking beyond COVID-19, as genomic science rapidly evolves, the ability to identify health risks will continue to expand and improve. As a partner to the healthcare ecosystem and global scientific community, we believe Ancestry can help find new ways to address many of the health concerns that keep us up at night. And while it’s indisputable that we worry more about our family’s health these days, the increased attention to our health — and acceleration of science, research and prevention — make me optimistic for the future.
Ron Park, MD
EVP of Health and DNA