A local doctor was selected by Governor Kay Ivey to serve on the new Alabama Rare Disease Advisory Council. Doctor David Bick is currently a clinical geneticist and faculty investigator at HudsonAlpha.
WAAY 31 met with Bick today to learn more about the council and what it means to him and those suffering from rare diseases.
"We estimate that 400,000 individuals in alabama alone are suffering from rare disease or an undiagnosed disease," said Bick.
Bick is one of 10 scientists, physicians, and advocates selected to be a part of the council. Bick told WAAY 31 the advisory council was formed to help better understand the needs of people with rare diseases and how they can be helped. Bick said the council will collect data on rare diseases and help connect medical providers, patient advocacy groups, biotech companies and funding agencies to patients and families in Alabama with rare diseases.
"It's really very forward thinking of the legislature and the governor to say alright these individuals who, yes are individually rare, but as a group really represents an important health problem for folks in alabama," said Bick.
In 2017, legislature was passed by both houses to create the adivisory council to keep the governor and legislature up to date on research, diagnosis, and treatment of rare diseases in the state.