Your blood can help doctors cure diseases
In 2018, IU School of Medicine and IU Health teamed up to launch the IU Precision Health Consent program within the IU Health system. At the heart of precision health is the donation of blood for genomic sequencing, more specifically defined as the extraction and analysis of genetic information that comes from an individual’s DNA which can be accessed from within a person’s blood. The genetic information is de-identified and provided to approved researchers who are working to find targeted treatments, cures and preventions for dreaded diseases, now and in the future.
To participate in the Precision Health Consent program, patients at IU Health hospitals (including University, Methodist, West, North, Arnett, Saxony, Ball and Bloomington) are being asked to donate an extra vial of blood as part of a regularly scheduled blood draw. The blood sample is stored at the Indiana Biobank, a repository of blood samples and linked to an individual’s electronic medical record (again, no patient identifying information is relayed to the approved researcher, only de-identified information). As an added benefit for participation, patients are automatically enrolled into All IN for Health, a community wellness platform that provides health resources and opportunities to participate in more health research and clinical studies.
To date, more than 6,000 IU Health patients have participated in the IU Precision Health Consent project by providing blood samples using a new electronic consent process that has been rolled out in clinical settings, particularly IU Health phlebotomy labs.