Access to Biomarker Testing

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. 

Map showing states where legislation is moving


Legislation enacted: AZ, IL, LA, RI, KY, NM, MD,MN, TX, GA, AR*, OK
Legislation passed in 2023: NY
Legislation introduced in 2023: CA,CT, CO, FL, MA, ME, NV, OH, PA (expected) 

*commercial only

Get more information about our campaigns.

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

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

August 4, 2023
New Jersey

TRENTON, NJ – AUGUST 4, 2023 – Earlier this week, cancer survivors, caregivers and advocates from across New Jersey accompanied the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) to the State House for tips on advocacy and a briefing on the importance of biomarker testing in cancer care. Advocates

June 9, 2023
New York

ALBANY, NY – JUNE 9, 2023 – Late last night, the New York State Assembly passed Assembly Bill 1673a to increase access to biomarker testing, which can help determine the best treatment plan for each patient. The bill will now go to Governor Hochul’s desk, providing her the opportunity to

June 8, 2023

Today, Gov. Kevin Stitt signed legislation that will improve access to care for cancer patients by expanding coverage for biomarker testing. Senate Bill 513 will enable more patients to benefit from biomarker testing, an essential step in accessing precision medicine treatments.

June 6, 2023

LAS VEGAS, NEV. – The Nevada State Legislature passed Assembly Bill 155 as the 82nd legislative session adjourned, Monday. The bill establishes provisions for biomarker testing in Nevada but falls short of ensuring broader patient access to needed testing. While the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) appreciates lawmakers’ recognition of the growing importance of biomarker testing in the treatment of cancer and other conditions, this bill was significantly weakened from its original intent.

Access to Biomarker Testing Resources

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.

Advances in precision medicine have led to targeted cancer therapies that have improved patient outcomes and quality of life within populations of cancer patients with very specific biomarkers. Testing patients for cancer biomarkers is integral to identify those who may benefit from targeted therapy. Despite the importance of such testing, many cancer patients are not tested for biomarkers. This fact sheet highlights recent advancements in targeted cancer therapies and data from ACS CAN Survivor Views surveys of cancer patients and survivors assessing barriers to biomarker testing.