Driving the precision medicine highway: Community health workers and patient navigators

Irma Ramos, Kristie N. Ramos, Kenneth Ramos

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

The general public is currently bombarded with direct-to-consumer advertising, real time "medical" guidance through the internet, access to digital devices that capture health information, and science-based adds that promote foods, cosmetics, and dietary supplements. Unfortunately, much of this information relies on terminology and concepts not well-understood by consumers, particularly those with lower levels of health and genomic literacy. Such constraints align with the limitations of the American public to obtain and process the basic medical information needed to make appropriate healthcare decisions. Low levels of health and genomic literacy render the American public ill-equipped to make informed decisions, use and interpret genomic information, or appreciate the benefits afforded by genomics-based technologies. We propose that coordinated expansion of the roles of community health workers and patient navigators within the precision medicine space can be effectively used to disseminate the knowledge required for the public to benefit from precision medicine advances in healthcare. A well-organized and trained community health worker and patient navigator workforce will provide a voice for the disadvantaged, especially among recent immigrants likely to be experiencing social isolation, language barriers, and economic deprivation. Armed with this knowledge, community health workers and patient navigators can advance the precision medicine agenda and empower disadvantaged communities to take advantage of major advances in the precision medicine era.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number85
JournalJournal of Translational Medicine
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 15 2019

Fingerprint

Patient Navigation
Precision Medicine
Medicine
Health
Health Literacy
Vulnerable Populations
Dietary Supplements
Health Status
Information Science
Communication Barriers
Delivery of Health Care
Social Isolation
Dietary supplements
Genomics
Terminology
Cosmetics
Internet
Digital devices
Electronic guidance systems
Economics

Keywords

  • Community health workers
  • Health literay
  • Patient navigators
  • Precision medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

Cite this

Driving the precision medicine highway : Community health workers and patient navigators. / Ramos, Irma; Ramos, Kristie N.; Ramos, Kenneth.

In: Journal of Translational Medicine, Vol. 17, No. 1, 85, 15.03.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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