Lawmakers Take Critical Step to Revolutionize Cancer Treatment in Florida, State’s Second Leading Cause of Death

Elected Officials Introduce Bill to Allow More Floridians to Access Testing That Allows Doctors to Personalize Health Care Treatments for Many Diseases Including Cancer

December 15, 2023

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.  Rep. Karen Gonzalez Pittman (R-Tampa) and Sen. Alexis Calatayud (R- Miami) filed bills today (HB 885 and SB 964) that will allow more Floridians to access biomarker testing, which has become an increasingly important part of cancer care in recent years. The bill will ensure more patients have the opportunity to benefit from this game-changing testing.

Patients who are diagnosed with certain types of cancer can receive biomarker testing to help providers determine the most effective form of treatment. It helps save critical time in a cancer fight. This form of precision medicine has become widely used and relied upon in cancer care in recent years. Unfortunately, not all Floridians are benefiting from the latest advancements, which can contribute to widening disparities in access to the most appropriate and effective treatments.

“Today’s legislation creates a path forward to ensure more Floridians receive the right treatment at the right time,” said Gonzalez Pittman, who sponsored the bill. “By aligning coverage for biomarker testing with the latest science, we can help increase access to precision medicine that can lead to better health outcomes and potentially reduce costs by allowing some Floridians to bypass costly and ineffective treatments and instead quickly identify which therapies will be most effective.”  

“Having coverage to access biomarker testing is critical to winning our fight against cancer and saving lives,” said Susan Harbin, Florida Senior Government Relations Director for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN). “Today’s legislation will bring the hope of precision medicine to more people across Florida.”

Biomarker testing may lead to higher chances of survivorship against cancer. For example, patients with certain lung cancer types who received biomarker testing and targeted therapy had a 31% reduction in risk of death. ACS CAN in Florida is leading the work in coalition with other patient and provider groups across the state to urge its passage.

To date, 14 states across the country have passed legislation to ensure coverage of biomarker testing, including Georgia and Texas.


The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) makes cancer a top priority for policymakers at every level of government. ACS CAN empowers volunteers across the country to make their voices heard to influence evidence-based public policy change that improves the lives of people with cancer and their families. We believe everyone should have a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer. Since 2001, as the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN has successfully advocated for billions of dollars in cancer research funding, expanded access to quality affordable health care, and advanced proven tobacco control measures. We’re more determined than ever to stand together with our volunteers to end cancer as we know it, for everyone. Join the fight by visiting

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