Being a physician is a privilege and heavy responsibility. People come to you at their most vulnerable, in pain and distress. Most often we can provide answers, a path forward--not always a cure, at least restorative treatments and hope. There are limits to human knowledge and there are times when we come up empty, unable to offer even the simplest comfort of a diagnosis.
Chase Peterson sadly passed away this week at the age of 84 after a complicated bout of pneumonia. He served as Senior Vice President of Health Sciences from 1978-1983 before being asked to serve as President of the University. By the time I got to know Chase he was transitioning into retirement from the University. This gave me the opportunity to know him and his remarkable wife, Grethe, in a way that I might not have had I met them earlier in his hectic career.
If past performance is the best indicator of future outcomes, then concerted, national efforts to advance the science of personalized medicine are a good bet.
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