FRANKFORT, KY – Today, Rep. Kim Moser introduced legislation that would increase access to biomarker testing, which can help determine the best treatment plan for a specific patient. Despite its benefits, access to biomarker testing has not kept pace with the rate of innovation due to several barriers, including lack of coverage by private health insurance and Medicaid programs, which Rep. Moser’s legislation would fix.
“Dubbed ‘the right treatment at the right time,’ precision medicine has played a critical role in improving cancer outcomes,” said Doug Hogan, government relations director, ACS CAN. “ACS CAN thanks Rep. Moser for sponsoring this important next step in ensuring cancer patients have access to precision medicine and looks forward to working with the rest of the legislature to pass this critical legislation.”
“Currently, Kentucky is in the bottom ten states for biomarker testing coverage. This bill will change that by greatly expanding biomarker testing coverage so more patients can utilize this life-saving tool Biomarker testing is an essential step toward improving cancer outcomes,” said Rep. Kim Moser, House Health Resources Committee chairwoman, and sponsor of the biomarker testing bill.
“As an Oncologist and Hematologist, I strongly believe in the value of biomarker testing,” said Dr. Doug Flora, executive medical director of Oncology Services and The Robert and Dell Ann Sathe Endowed chair in Oncology at St. Elizabeth Healthcare. “Access to these tests remains a barrier for many patients. I am passionate about making biomarker testing more accessible so that all patients can benefit from the precision medicine approach and receive the best possible care.”
“Biomarker testing is probably the single most important factor in my quality and longevity of life. When I was diagnosed with lung cancer as someone who has never smoked, biomarker testing was suggested to help choose the most effective treatment plan,” said Leah Phillips, a cancer survivor who lives in Oldham County. “The testing revealed that I have a genetically driven cancer that has a target therapy drug, which has allowed me to live a near normal life for the past three years and hopefully for many more. Without appropriate and consistent insurance coverage, cancer patients may not be able to afford the biomarker testing they need to save their lives. Biomarker testing is the wave of the future, and all patients need consistent coverage and access for better outcomes.”
About ACS CAN:
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 www.fightcancer.org.