France’s third-largest private health insurer will provide partial reimbursement of a colorectal test made by Epigenomics AG, the company announced. Swiss Life, which has 2 million policyholders, will reimburse 50% of the test cost of €95 ($117), according to the German-American molecular diagnostics company. Swiss Life is the first French insurance company to offer the test, which is based on the Septin 9 biomarker. The French social-security system does not cover the test.
Called Epi proColon 2.0 CE, the CE-marked test recently became commercially available in France. Epigenomics says it is the first molecular diagnostic for early detection of colorectal cancer in blood plasma. Pierre François, CEO of Swiss Life, says colorectal cancer is a “major public health issue” in France, where 17,000 die annually from the disease. François says 17 million are eligible for screening with the Epigenomics test. Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in France, according to Swiss Life.