Student Advocacy: Improving Access to Biomarker Testing

Fourth-year medicine student Negin Khosravi recently testified before the Ohio House in support of H.B. 24, which would require coverage of biomarker testing for cancer patients. She shared her reflections on the experience with The Pulse.

I have been a future leader council member of AMCNO [Academy of Medicine of Cleveland and Northern Ohio] for the past year and have been involved in advocacy and improving community health ever since. As a future leader, some of my tasks have included influencing policy at different levels and organizing public health initiatives. This past February, I went to an advocacy conference in DC and met with representatives to discuss different issues going on in health care such as prior authorization, increasing residency spots and scope creep.

Recently, I was invited to provide a testimony on a [Ohio] House bill involving promoting biomarker testing use for cancer patients and asking for proper insurance coverage for all patients for whom it is medically indicated to seek biomarker testing. I am passionate about this topic not only as a physician, but also as someone who has lost two close family members to cancer. My family members did not have access to things such as biomarker testing and struggled with costs even after insurance coverage. 

This experience was heartwarming and motivational as it reassured me of my goal of wanting to be a transformational leader through advocacy and policy making. As an incoming emergency medicine resident, advocacy is a large part of my career. I will continue to serve on the AMCNO board next year and plan on being involved with the community for the rest of my career. 

Watch Negin Khosravi’s testimony on the Ohio Channel (at the 3:38-8:15 mark)

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