10:41 AM

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey to pioneer new approaches to study cancer treatment through collaboration with NantHealth

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey (Horizon BCBSNJ) and NantHealth announced today the launch of a study in which Horizon BCBSNJ will provide coverage for the GPS Cancer test. 150 eligible patients with certain types of cancer will be tested at leading health centers serving Horizon members. GPS Cancer testing allows medical professionals to make treatment decisions that are more personalized to the patient based on a highly enhanced understanding the patient’s DNA and a unique biology of a patient’s tumor. COTA will monitor and track differences in patient outcomes and provide cost analysis throughout the testing.

“Horizon is committed to collaborating with medical leaders and leveraging new clinical technologies to help our 3.8 million members defeat cancer,” said Allen Karp, Senior Vice President of Healthcare Management for Horizon BCBSNJ.

“This is a significant milestone for NantHealth and we are excited about this partnership with Horizon, the largest payer in New Jersey and second major Blues plan to cover GPS Cancer and COTA,” said Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, founder and CEO of NantHealth and founder of the Cancer Moonshot 2020 program. “With these institutions, we’re working to pioneer change for cancer patients by arming providers with the most valuable and relevant information. With GPS Cancer, New Jersey-area oncologists will have access to cutting-edge genomic sequencing and proteomics capabilities that will help them guide treatment strategies before therapy begins, thereby enabling the delivery of higher quality, more cost-effective care for their patients,” he said.

“For years we’ve treated cancer without being informed by a patient’s specific DNA, but we all have unique genetic profiles which react differently to different treatment approaches,” said Mary Ann Christopher, chief of Clinical Operations and Transformation at Horizon BCBSNJ. “The GPS Cancer test allows health professionals to understand an individual person’s genetic profile and the unique biology of the tumor and then design a very specific and personalized course of treatment,” she said.

The clinical study will focus on the impact of NantHealth’s next-generation whole genome testing on patients with previously untreated, inoperable pancreatic cancer, metastatic breast cancer and advanced lung cancer.

“By partnering with Horizon and NantHealth, we hope to better impact the lives of those facing three of the most common cancers in New Jersey,” said Andrew L. Pecora, MD, FACP, CPE, founder and executive chairman of COTA. “Using COTA technologies that precisely measures variance in clinical and cost outcomes has the potential to improve cancer research and deliver higher quality care for Horizon’s members at potentially lower costs. This initiative underscores our commitment to the cancer community and we are excited about the possibilities of this joint partnership.”

Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong
Contact: Dorit Baxter
Dr. Andrew Pecora
Contact: Shannon Kozibroda

About Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, the state’s oldest and largest health insurer is a tax-paying, not-for-profit health service corporation, providing a wide array of medical, dental, and prescription insurance products and services. Horizon BCBSNJ is leading the transformation of health care in New Jersey by working with doctors and hospitals to deliver innovative, patient-centered programs that reward the quality, not quantity, of care patients receive. Learn more at www.HorizonBlue.com. Horizon BCBSNJ is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association serving more than 3.8 million members.

About NantHealth, Inc.
NantHealth, Inc., a member of the NantWorks ecosystem of companies, is a next-generation, evidence-based, personalized healthcare company enabling improved patient outcomes and more effective treatment decisions for critical illnesses. NantHealth’s unique systems-based approach to personalized healthcare applies novel diagnostics tailored to the specific molecular profiles of patient tissues and integrates this molecular data in a clinical setting with large-scale, real-time biometric signal and phenotypic data to track patient outcomes and deliver precision medicine. For nearly a decade, NantHealth has developed an adaptive learning system, CLINICS, which includes its unique software, middleware and hardware systems infrastructure that collects, indexes, analyzes and interprets billions of molecular, clinical, operational and financial data points derived from novel and traditional sources, continuously improves decision-making and further optimizes our clinical pathways and decision algorithms.