CADTH’s 2023 Watch List Spotlights Precision Medicine Technologies and Issues

Amid the growth in precision medicine, a new CADTH report unpacks the hype from hope about these technologies and highlights the issues that could influence their adoption

Tests that could alter traditional pathways for cancer care. Tools that offer access to genetic test results and ways to engage with health care professionals. Tests that could predict which medications are a right fit for people with mental health conditions.

According to a newly published report from CADTH, these are among the top 5 health technologies to watch within precision medicine — an innovative approach to treatment and medicine that considers a person’s unique genes, characteristics, and environment to inform and tailor their care.

Read the Watch List

Beyond identifying the top technologies that have the most potential to transform health systems over the next 5 years, the report also highlights the top 5 issues that crosscut the broader scope of precision medicine and could limit health systems from realizing the full potential of these advancements. These issues include disparities in access and use, increased demands on health system capacity and infrastructure, and challenges in regulating and evaluating these technologies.

“Precision medicine represents one of the next big shifts in health care and it will significantly impact how we deliver care and the demands placed on our health systems,” said Lesley Dunfield, CADTH’s Vice-President, Medical Devices and Clinical Interventions. “This report sheds light on the novel technologies that we should be paying attention to because they are most likely to alter current workflows and change how we diagnose and treat many illnesses.”

The top 5 precision medicine technologies identified by CADTH are:

  • Digital Tools to Access Genetic Information and Navigate Care
  • Liquid Biopsy for Informing Cancer Treatments
  • “Omics-Based” Sequencing Technologies Across Pathways of Care
  • Pharmacogenomics Tests for Mental Health Conditions
  • Population-Based Genetic Screening Interventions

The top 5 issues to watch are:

  • Disparities in the Implementation of Precision Medicine Technologies
  • Increased Demands on Health System Capacity and Infrastructure From the Use of Precision Medicine
  • Evolving Roles and Scopes of Practice for Health Care Professionals
  • Complexity in Interpreting Test Results
  • Challenges in Regulating and Evaluating Precision Medicine Technologies

Quick facts

  • CADTH’s 2023 Watch List of the Top 10 Precision Medicine Technologies and Issues gives decision-makers a clear signal about 5 precision medicine technologies that are likely to shape the future of health care in Canada over the next 5 years and 5 issues that will affect their ongoing development and adoption.
  • Unveiled annually, the CADTH Watch List aims to inform Canada’s innovation agenda by identifying and assessing the most promising developments in digital and health technologies while providing health system leaders with context for some of the decisions that may lie ahead.
  • To develop the report, a short list of emerging technologies and issues was identified from published literature and industry news with input from an expert advisory group. The final items on the Watch List were selected by a panel through a consensus-based decision-making process. A detailed description of the methodology is outlined in the report.

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CADTH is a not-for-profit organization responsible for providing Canada’s health care decision-makers with objective evidence to help make informed decisions about the optimal use of drugs and medical devices in our health care system. CADTH receives funding from Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial governments, with the exception of Quebec. For further information: Marketing and Communications, [email protected], (613) 614-6863.