-- Diagnostic deemed medically necessary to guide treatment decisions for patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) --
Biodesix , Inc. today announced that its VeriStrat® test received a positive coverage decision from CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS). CareFirst announced its position to extend coverage to the VeriStrat blood-based test for use as “a marker to aid in predicting patient response to EGFR-TKI drugs,” as described in the Health Care Policy section of BlueLink in March 2015, and published a positive coverage policy on April 20, 2015 on its website
VeriStrat is a blood-based proteomic test that provides physicians with prognostic and predictive information that helps guide treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC.) With test results reported in less than 72 hours, physicians can assess the patient’s VeriStrat profile just prior to making treatment decisions. VeriStrat testing was shown to be both cost effective and deliver cost savings in a health economics study published in Lung Cancer in April 2015; study results demonstrated that overall survival for patients with NSCLC improved by more than 1 month, and improved quality of life when making test-guided treatment decisions. A shift away from ineffective therapy for those patients with a test result of “poor” led to a reduction in the drug and drug administration costs alone of $4,098 per patient.
“Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in both women and men in the United States and in 2015 approximately 221,000 new cases of lung cancer are expected to be diagnosed. The need for precision medicine – to understand which lung cancer patients will respond to which therapies and, as a result, increase overall survival in this disease, is critical,” said David Brunel, Biodesix ’ CEO. “This decision is great news for CareFirst BCBS’ members who can now be confident of coverage when their physicians choose VeriStrat to help guide their treatment decisions.”
CareFirst BCBS, which covers patients in Maryland , the District of Columbia , and portions of Virginia, has a membership of 3.4 million people, and is the largest health-care insurer in the Mid-Atlantic region. CareFirst’s policy can be found at notesnet.carefirst.com.
VeriStrat and Biodesix are registered trademarks of Biodesix , Inc. All other trademarks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners.