Enhancing Patients’ Access to Genomic Diagnostics
A Proposal for Reform of the French Healthcare System to Allow Broader Adoption of Genomic Testing
Genomic profiling, using Genomic Diagnostics, has been defined as “a laboratory method that is used to learn about the genes in a person or in a specific cell type, and the way those genes interact with each other and with the environment.”
Genomic Diagnostics can fundamentally transform healthcare for three main reasons: significantly increasing the breadth, depth and accuracy of the analysis of human health and disease for each patient profiled, bringing more accurate and actionable diagnostic information earlier in the course of disease, and significant economic and societal value through a growing global industry which will positively impact lives of patients around the globe.
To examine the issue of patients’ access to Genomic Diagnostics, Alira Health and EUCOPE have collaborated to create a position paper, addressed to all stakeholders in the French healthcare system: physicians, payers, providers (including hospitals and labs), procurement teams, policy makers, and, of course, patients and their advocates. Continue reading to get the overview of the recommendations that will enhance the Genomic Diagnostics ecosystem in France.
The Challenge Presented by Systemic Barriers
While France is a pioneer in ground-breaking genomic innovation, the country has systemic barriers that limit patient access to Genomic Diagnostics. These barriers include early funding programs becoming a bottleneck for innovation, inadequate reimbursement to enable a shift from research use to routine clinical practice, and a general lack of consideration for the patient perspective on Genomic Diagnostics and genomics.
Due to these barriers, access to genomic testing is limited, and the result is nothing less than sub-optimal outcomes for patients. The French healthcare system is also overlooking potential cost-savings due to inefficient care provision across the entire patient pathway. If these systemic barriers can be overcome, the French Genomic Diagnostics ecosystem would be fundamentally reformed, improving health outcomes and lowering total healthcare system costs.
To enable this shift, Alira Health and EUCOPE have conducted a robust research process, resulting in these three key recommendations to enhance the Genomic Diagnostics ecosystem in France:
- Modify existing early access pathways to enable faster and appropriate reimbursement of promising innovative Genomic Diagnostics, with a clear evidence-based evaluation pathway to determine long term reimbursement.
- Facilitate the integration of Genomic Diagnostics into clinical practice by establishing real-world evidence for diagnostics in the context of reimbursement.
- Increase the weighting of the patients’ perspective on the value of Genomic Diagnostics in the evaluation process for the reimbursement of Genomic Diagnostics
We encourage all stakeholders in the Genomic Diagnostics ecosystem in France to urgently review and implement the recommendations set forth in this position paper. Patient outcomes will improve, total costs will be minimized, and the French healthcare ecosystem will benefit from the integration and utilization of these tests.