A measure that would require insurance companies in New York to cover biomarker testing will head to Gov. Kathy Hochul's desk for her consideration after clearing both chambers of the Legislature on Thursday. 

The measure has been backed by anti-cancer advocates as a way to expand options for patients. Insurance companies had previously put the measure into question over whether it is in the best interest of patients. But in a statement, an advocacy group pointed to changes to the bill. 

Biomarker testing uses genes or proteins to detect possible data about cancer and the measure to require coverage had bipartisan backing in the state Senate and Assembly. 

“Biomarkers are an excellent tool for cancer care, amongst other illnesses,” said state Sen. Roxanne Persaud, a sponsor of the measure. “Biomarkers are essential when determining the best possible treatment for many patients. This testing provides a wealth of information to medical providers that can be used to personalize treatment and often improve patients' quality of life. This legislation is a step in saving the lives of New Yorkers.”

The New York Health Plan Association had previously been critical of a prior version of the measure, warning it would create a too broad set of circumstances for patients. 

“We appreciate that the sponsors amended the bill to address these concerns," said New York Health Plan Association President and CEO Eric Linzer. "The final bill takes a balanced approach of utilizing biomarker testing to inform the best treatment of care for patients through safe and effective testing that is supported by nationally recognized clinical guidelines.”