Access to Biomarker Testing

Share

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

 

Biomarker testing coverage for all state-regulated plans: AZ, CA, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MD, MN, NM, NY, OK, RI, TX 
Biomarker testing coverage for some plans: AR, CO, CT, FL (awaiting signature), LA
Legislation introduced: HI, MA, ME, NV, NJ, 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. ***Connecticut law applies to Medicaid. 

 

Get more information about our campaigns.

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

 

Last Updated June 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.

Patient and Provider Stories

Heather

Heather’s Story

Pete

Pete’s Story

Ruth

Ruth’s Story

Carla

Carla’s Story

 

Take Action

Researcher

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

July 1, 2024
Pennsylvania

Today, Governor Shapiro signed House Bill 1754 into law, securing a major win for patients across Pennsylvania. The new law will require all state-regulated health plans, including Medicaid, to cover comprehensive biomarker testing, which will enable more Pennsylvanians to access biomarker testing that can open the door to precision medicine. Targeted treatment can lead to fewer side effects, improved survival, better quality of life and potentially lower costs for patients facing cancer and other serious illnesses.

June 26, 2024
Ohio

Cancer Advocates Applauds the House’s Passage of Biomarker Testing Legislation, Ensuring Ohioans Have Better Access to Personalized Care.

June 25, 2024
Pennsylvania

Earlier today, the Pennsylvania State Senate unanimously passed House Bill 1754, the bipartisan proposal to increase access to biomarker testing. The bill will now go to Governor Shapiro’s desk, providing him the opportunity to ensure coverage of this essential testing for more Pennsylvanians. The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) and the PA Biomarker Testing Coalition are advocating for this significant policy change to ensure more cancer patients and people with other illnesses and diseases can get the testing needed to access precision medicine.

June 18, 2024
Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis signed HB885 into law, which expands patient access to biomarker testing, a key tool used by physicians to identify the most effective treatment of cancer and other diseases.

Access to Biomarker Testing Resources

Biomarker testing is becoming increasingly important for cancer care because it connects the right patient, to the right treatment, at the right time, however insurance coverage of testing varies widely.

ACS CAN conducted a survey of 315 oncology providers examining barriers providers face in performing recommended cancer biomarker testing. The survey found that providers face challenges such as lab turnaround time, patient concerns about out-of-pocket-costs, and insurance coverage of biomarker tests.

Precision medicine in cancer involves targeted therapies which work by interfering with specific cellular processes involved in the growth, spread, and progression of cancer. Treatment with targeted therapy often requires diagnostic testing to identify specific cancer biomarkers. Testing patients for biomarkers is integral to precision medicine in cancer care.