Access to Biomarker Testing

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Biomarker testing is key to unlocking precision medicine.

Biomarkers are often used to help determine the best treatment for a patient, but not all communities are benefitting from the latest advancements in biomarker testing and precision medicine.


Progress in improving cancer outcomes increasingly involves the use of precision medicine. Biomarker testing is an important step for accessing precision medicine including targeted therapies that can lead to improved survivorship and better quality of life for cancer patients. But without action to expand coverage of and access to biomarker testing, advances in precision medicine could increase existing disparities in cancer outcomes by race, ethnicity, income, and geography.

ACS CAN is working to expand insurance coverage of comprehensive biomarker testing. 

Biomarker Legislation Status as of May 10

 

Legislation enacted: AZ, AR*, CA, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, LA*, MD, MN, NM, NY, OK, RI, TX
Legislation introduced: CO, FL**, HI, MA, ME, NV, OH, PA, VT, WA, WV

*Arkansas and Louisiana laws apply to state-regulated private plans  **Florida law applies to Medicaid and state employee health plan

 

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Colorado | Florida | Massachusetts | Maryland | Maine | Minnesota | Nevada |  New York | Ohio | Oklahoma | PennsylvaniaTexas | Washington

 

Last Updated January 2024

Biomarker testing helps ensure cancer patients get the right treatment at the right time.

It allows doctors to precisely target a specific cancer so patients may not have to undergo more generalized treatments like chemo and radiation that may not work as well for them.

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Help cancer patients get the right treatment at the right time!

Biomarker testing is the latest advanced in cancer research that is personal to the patient and their cancer, helping ensure patients get the right treatment at the right time. 

Latest Updates

May 22, 2024
Massachusetts

S. 689 & H. 1074 would ensure all communities benefit from the same advances in medical treatment through biomarker testing

May 15, 2024
Maine

For the second year in a row, legislation to increase access to biomarker testing has failed to pass in the final days of legislative activity.

May 14, 2024
Maine

By ensuring more Mainers have biomarker testing covered by their insurance plans, we can increase access to personalized medicine and realize better outcomes for cancer patients as well other disease groups. It's time for Gov. Mills to act to make this a reality.

May 8, 2024
Colorado

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) applauds the Colorado General Assembly for taking a great first step to increasing access to biomarker testing by passing SB24-124. The bill was met with strong bi-partisan support in both the House and Senate. With the legislative process now complete, the bill now awaits the signature of Governor Jared Polis. If enacted, the policy would help connect more patients diagnosed with cancer or other diseases with the right treatment at the right time through biomarker testing.

Access to Biomarker Testing Resources

The nation’s drug shortage crisis continues to affect cancer patients and survivors with 1 in every 10 (10%) reporting impacts to care, a majority of whom have had difficulties finding substitute medications (68%) and cited treatment delays (45%).

Our latest Survivor Views survey sees increases in biomarker testing since the question was last asked three years ago along with reduced cost and coverage barriers in that time. Cancer patients and survivors describe the benefits and overwhelmingly agree biomarker testing gave their providers information that improved their treatment. 

Biomarker testing is key to unlocking precision medicine. However, coverage for guideline-recommended biomarker tests is not universal and can be a barrier to cancer patients accessing treatments that can lead to improved survival and quality of life.