The two lead stories in this issue of UW Medicine exemplify two very different sides of medicine. The ENCODE project, which has resulted in the development of an “operating system” for the human genome, opens a universe of options for new treatments and insights into health and the human body. Some of the most significant work in this landmark global project has emanated from the University of Washington, and the new directions it creates are truly remarkable and will change medicine as we know it.
The UW Center for Palliative Care was created at UW Medicine to ensure that faculty, staff, students and trainees receive the knowledge and skills that will enhance the quality of care they provide patients with chronic illness, during emergency care and at life’s end. Those with life-limiting illnesses need our closest attention to ensure their lives are as healthy, comfortable and rewarding as possible. What’s vitally important is communication, and faculty in the new center are world leaders in understanding and guiding communication when patients and families need it most.
I extend my thanks to the many individuals involved at UW in the ENCODE project and the Center for Palliative Care. And thank you to the thousands of UW School of Medicine alumni for your outstanding work to improve the lives of people throughout the world.
Paul G. Ramsey, M.D.
CEO, UW Medicine
Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs and
Dean of the School of Medicine,
University of Washington