Medicare approves WashU Medicine’s whole-genome test for blood cancers

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A new test for two blood cancers – developed by a team at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis – is the first whole-genome sequencing test for cancer to be approved for reimbursement by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The test, known as ChromoSeq, advances precision medicine approaches for treating blood cancers by identifying the full suite of genetic changes in a patient’s cancer cells, which provides crucial information that physicians can use to help determine the optimal treatment strategy for individual patients.

Since 2021, ChromoSeq has been used routinely by Washington University oncologists to guide treatment decisions for patients at Siteman Cancer Center with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or a group of blood cancers called myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). Siteman is based at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University. With Medicare approval for the test, physicians nationwide caring for Medicare patients diagnosed with AML or MDS will be able to order the test through Washington University Pathology Services, and Medicare will cover the cost.