In my view, the one great hope for resolving our health care crisis (besides the private market) is the ongoing research to inexpensively decode the human genome at an individual level. The New York Times and the Washington Post featured fascinating articles today about recent progress in this research. The Washington Post article explains that
Cost trends [in personalized genome sequencing] are encouraging. The first 3 billion-letter genome sequences took more than a decade to complete and cost billions of dollars. During Venter’s latest project, costs dropped precipitously, and today, several scientists said, an entire diploid genome could probably be done for about $100,000. Some predict that a $1,000 genome will be available within five years.Venter and others hope that at that point many people will get sequenced and, as Venter has already done with his own, will post their genomes on public databases along with their medical information and family history. That will allow computers to start drawing connections between gene patterns and diseases.