The Genome At Ten

When I started college in 1994, we were told there were over 100,000 genes in the human genome. Today, it’s estimated to be about 20,000 based on our findings from the Human Genome Project.

Science humbles me. We know so little about the human body. And what we “know” today will be different than what we “know” in ten years. The practice of medicine will have gone through two fundamental transitions— there is a common belief within the medical profession that the practice of medicine changes every 5 years. What’s state of the art today is either disrupted by something better or by more accurate information. 

One hundred years ago, only about 10% of doctors graduated from medical schools. The rest were essentially shaman. Healthcare is a very new “science.” 

That’s why I tend to view the practice of medicine with skeptical eyes. I know what we don’t know. And extrapolate that out a bit more…and you can see why I feel so strongly about healthcare bankrupting our country. The science of healthcare in America is completely based on a moving target. We’re trying to understand the minutiae, rather than focusing on just getting the stupid simple basics right 99% of the time.

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