AdventHealth to Leverage Rady Children’s Diagnostic Sequencing Approach for Critically Ill Kids

[Photo: Earnie Grafton]

Florida’s AdventHealth for Children and Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine (RCIGM) have announced a partnership that will bring rapid and ultra-rapid whole genome sequencing to help diagnose critically ill infants and children in AdventHealth’s intensive care unit with the aim of providing fast diagnoses of their conditions.

The rapid and ultra-rapid whole genome sequencing diagnostic technology has been employed for a number of years at RCIGM and has been proven to reduce the overall costs of care when used to diagnosed critically ill children with rare genetic diseases. AdventHealth will work with Rady Children’s to deliver these results to patients, which can offer preliminary diagnoses for the most urgent cases in as little as three days.

“Genomics is the future of medicine. This advanced testing can have a significant impact on how we diagnose and treat patients,” said Dr. Rajan Wadhawan, a board-certified neonatologist and senior executive officer of AdventHealth for Children and AdventHealth for Women in a press release. “This partnership will help us provide the best care to some of the littlest and sickest patients in our care.”

The partnership with RCIGM is the latest for AdventHealth as it continues to build it genomic medicine capabilities. Last year, the health system rolled out its WholeMe study, launched in partnership with population genomics company Helix. The study is currently enrolling up to 10,000 patients to sequence their DNA searching for genes linked to familial hypercholesterolemia (FH), a genetic condition that causes high cholesterol and can lead to heart attacks, even in younger people, if left untreated.

Where AdventHealth seeks to leverage the strength of Helix for FH, it now does the same to provide more precise care for children with rare diseases in its system. It’s work with RCIGM, located on the campus of Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego, will provide access to RCIGM’s state- of-the-art genome sequencing lab and its multi-disciplinary team of experts who specialize in providing timely and accurate guidance to physicians caring for children with rare genetic disease.

“Our team is focused on using the power of rapid Whole-Genome Sequencing to identify or rule out most genetic diseases in one swift step and empower the medical team at the bedside to provide personalized treatment and improve outcomes,” said Dr. Stephen Kingsmore, president and CEO of RCIGM. “We’re delighted to partner with AdventHealth to bring the life-changing benefits of Rapid Precision Medicine to the children and families of Central Florida.”

In addition, AdventHealth is announced the appointment of  Dr. Majed Dasouki, a leading expert on the field of genetic medicine, as the medical director for AdventHealth Medical Group’s genetic medicine practice in Orlando. In this role, he will help patients and families interpret genetic test results and develop treatment plans for those with genetic disorders, both children and adults. Dasouki previously served as the director of the Newborn Screening and Biochemical Genetics Laboratory (NSBGL) at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

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