Culture23andMe is personalizing healthcare with DNA testing

23andMe is personalizing healthcare with DNA testing

Curtis Midkiff, Jr., director of brand marketing, partnerships and social engagement at 23andMe, believes understanding your family’s genetics can contribute to better healthcare.
23andMe is a genomics and biotechnology company that provides health and ancestry reports using home-based saliva collection kits. To kick off homecoming season, on Oct. 27, Midkiff attended the Morehouse Alumni Ultimate Health and Wellness Fun Day Experience hosted in The Villages At Carver Family YMCA. Midkiff used the opportunity to educate attendees on how DNA can impact their health through genetic insights.The Morehouse alumnus discussed with rolling out what the community can expect from their 23andMe kits and other topics.
What was it like being a part of the Morehouse Alumni Ultimate Health and Wellness Fun Day Experience?I’m just excited. During homecoming, there are a lot of activities. It was great to kick it off with a focus on health and wellness, which is a topic that we should talk about more when we get together. It was great and I enjoyed it immensely.
What type of company is 23andMe?
We’re a company that has been known in the past for helping folks find out about their ancestry, heritage or [locate] DNA relatives. In recent years, what we’ve expanded to is letting people know that their DNA can also unlock some things about their health. It’s a great way to learn more about what your genetics say about your health, so then you can adjust your lifestyle and environment accordingly. That’s why we’re here giving out our kits to the community, but also to expand that knowledge and awareness to help people live healthier lives.
What do you want people to get out of this experience??
The key to your genetics is that they are similar to a check engine light. It’s not a diagnosis, but it says, “Hey, there’s something that we see in your genetics that you may want to check into.” What happens is, you go to your doctor to get further testing or explore it more to help you handle prevention. It’s a great source of information that you can use as a part of a regular health plan.
Were there interactive moments planned for attendees?
We hosted a homecoming huddle. We had a group of brothers from different backgrounds such as Morehouse [College] and Clark [Atlanta University]. Some were former athletes, business owners and pastors.  We all had a fun candid conversation about Black men’s health, mental health, family relationships and resilience. As the moderator of the panel, I learned a lot but I think we all learned a lot from each other.
What did this event mean to you personally as a Morehouse alumnus?
As a proud alum[nus], it’s great to be with the Alumni Association for this health and wellness event. We hope to do this every homecoming.

Source: Rolling Out

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