The College of American Pathologists (CAP) is requesting that health insurer Highmark stop its new credentialing requirements for next-generation sequencing (NGS) testing that impose third-party validation of NGS results and interpretation of variants of uncertain significance. According to the CAP, the new credentialing requirements are unnecessarily burdening NGS testing laboratories.


In a Nov. 14 letter, the CAP urged Highmark to do away with the requirement, stating that it is not supported by science and presents a conflict of interest.


“The purported scientific basis for the use of this proposed proficiency testing methodology is contrived, misapplied, and misrepresented, and further confounded by an apparent conflict of interest. For these reasons, we believe this new requirement would not only fail to improve patient care but would distract laboratories from clinically relevant aspects of testing that could improve quality. Therefore, we request that Highmark abandon this requirement,” the CAP said in the letter.


The CAP added that the additional requirements will take significant time, resources, and education to implement, therefore compounding existing administrative and reporting burdens of laboratories.


The CAP has requested a meeting with Highmark to discuss the new policy.