Veracyte Announces Positive Coverage Policy for the Afirma® Gene Expression Classifier from Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC)

December 14, 2015

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., December 14, 2015 --- Veracyte, Inc. (NASDAQ: VCYT), a molecular diagnostics company pioneering the field of molecular cytology, today announced that Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and one of the nation's largest health insurers, has posted a medical policy that covers Veracyte's Afirma Gene Expression Classifier (GEC). The policy will cover as medically necessary the genomic test for HCSC's nearly 16 million members, effective January 1, 2016.

Additionally, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield in New York State issued a positive coverage decision for the Afirma GEC. These new policies will bring the total number of insured lives covered for the test to nearly 175 million, including more than 40 million Blue Cross and Blue Shield plan members. The plans determined that the Afirma GEC may be medically necessary for use in identifying patients with benign thyroid nodules – and who can thus potentially avoid a diagnostic surgery – among those whose fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy results are indeterminate following traditional cytopathology review.

"We are delighted that these notable Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans will make the Afirma GEC available as a covered benefit for their members," said Bonnie Anderson, Veracyte's president and chief executive officer. "We believe these coverage decisions reflect the value of the Afirma GEC in helping patients with thyroid nodules avoid unnecessary surgery, while also removing costs from the healthcare system. The Afirma GEC's value is proven in multiple peer-reviewed, published studies demonstrating the test's performance and clinical utility, as well as through its inclusion in leading medical guidelines.

"We are also pleased to enter into contracts with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota, through which Veracyte becomes an in-network provider to these plans, which can facilitate patient access to the Afirma GEC." Veracyte now has such contracts in place with health plans representing nearly 130 million total members, including over seven million Blue Cross and Blue Shield members.

According to the American Cancer Society, thyroid cancer is the fastest-increasing cancer in the United States, with more than 62,000 new cases expected in 2015. Among the approximately 525,000 fine-needle aspirations performed on patients with thyroid nodules each year in the United States, 15-30 percent of the results are inconclusive in ruling out cancer, and most physicians have traditionally recommended thyroid surgery for final diagnosis. Following surgery, however, 70-80 percent of these patients' nodules are diagnosed as benign.

About Afirma

Veracyte's Afirma Thyroid FNA Analysis is a comprehensive solution for improved thyroid nodule assessment. It centers on the Afirma Gene Expression Classifier, a 142-gene molecular test that identifies benign thyroid nodules among those deemed indeterminate by cytopathology, enabling these patients to potentially avoid an unnecessary surgery. An additional 25 genes are used to differentiate uncommon neoplasm subtypes. The company's Afirma Malignancy Classifiers - comprising tests for medullary thyroid cancer and BRAF gene mutation status - are designed to inform surgical strategy for those patients headed to surgery based on their cytopathology or Afirma GEC results.

About Veracyte

Veracyte (NASDAQ: VCYT) is pioneering the field of molecular cytology, offering genomic solutions that resolve diagnostic ambiguity and enable physicians to make more informed treatment decisions at an early stage in patient care. By improving preoperative diagnostic accuracy, the company aims to help patients avoid unnecessary invasive procedures while reducing healthcare costs. Veracyte's Afirma Thyroid FNA Analysis centers on the proprietary Afirma Gene Expression Classifier and is becoming a new standard of care in thyroid nodule assessment. The Afirma test is recommended in leading practice guidelines and is covered for nearly 175 million lives in the United States, including through Medicare and many commercial insurance plans. Veracyte is expanding its molecular cytology franchise to other clinical areas, beginning with difficult-to-diagnose lung diseases. In April 2015, the company launched the Percepta™ Bronchial Genomic Classifier, a test to evaluate patients with lung nodules that are suspicious for cancer. Veracyte is developing a second product in pulmonology, targeting interstitial lung diseases, including idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. For more information, please visit<>.