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New Tool for Assessing Cost of ctDNA Testing

A framework for calculating the cost of circulating tumor DNA testing across different workflows is presented in the Journal of Molecular Diagnostics this week, providing a tool that can help labs and hospitals make informed investment decisions. As ctDNA testing becomes increasingly used in cancer care, estimating its total cost — a requirement for reimbursement and implementation — remains challenging due to variations in workflows. To help overcome this problem, researchers from the Netherlands Cancer Institute developed a framework that provides a consistent total cost calculation for ctDNA testing across different diagnostic workflows and platforms — including aspects such as personnel, materials, overhead, and failures — while taking test volume into account. The framework's developers also provide an open-access tool to allow for laboratory-specific calculations to explore the total costs of ctDNA testing-specific workflow parameters. The framework, they write, "can support investment decisions in clinical practice, as well as the calculation of the costs of ctDNA testing for future cost-effectiveness studies."