Copeman Corner – Is Precision Medicine The Future Of Healthcare?


Suppose doctors could prescribe medication based on an individual’s genetic makeup. Or maybe they could determine cancer treatment based on the genetic mutation a tumour carries, regardless of its location in the body. Sounds like science fiction, right?

Well, access to these kinds of nuanced approaches to care—often referred to as personalized, individualized or precision medicine—is closer than you think.

Precision medicine is an emerging model of care that aims to better customize the medical decisions, treatments and practices to an individual patient. One major concept of precision medicine is to explore an individual’s genetic makeup through diagnostic testing to determine the best course of treatment for that individual.

This diagnostic testing—referred to as pharmacogenetic testing—is employed for selecting appropriate and optimal therapies based on the context of one’s unique genetic content. This model allows doctors to more accurately predict which treatments and prevention strategies will work for particular people.

Every year in Canada, there are approximately 200,000 severe adverse drug reactions that result in the deaths of between 10,000 and 20,000 people.  Pharmacogenetic testing will help medical professionals and pharmacists provide more accurate prescription recommendations to reduce these adverse drug reactions. For example, for patients with a new or existing diagnosis of cardiovascular disease or mental illness, pharmacogenetic testing can help showcase which medication would be most effective with the least side effects.

Copeman is pleased to announce that, in addition to pharmacogenetic testing, a full panel of genetic-based testing for reproductive health, breast cancer and hereditary testing is now available.


For more information about Copeman Healthcare please visit: or contact Tia Young at 604 889 8343 or