$$$ Having cancer Is expensive $$$

CSC welcomes Robyn Stoller, founder of CancerHawk and tireless patient advocate as a guest blogger. We’re thrilled to be working with her and look forward to additional informative and insightful posts in the coming months.


I had no idea how expensive having cancer could be, that is until I lived it… co-pays, RXs, supplements, OTC meds, special foods, private nursing assistance, testing that insurance didn’t cover (even though we had excellent insurance coverage), parking fees at doctor’s offices, the list of expenses goes on & on… plus like many people, Alan was unable to work during his treatments.

Just the other day, I read a post in Wall Street Journal’s Health blog how out-of-pocket cost for some cancer patients exceed $700 a month. Another study estimates that 30% of cancer patients (with insurance) go into financial debt because of cancer. Others don’t fill their prescriptions or get treatments because they simply can’t afford it.

Here are 2 AMAZING organizations that are advising patients on what resources are available to ease the financial burden that cancer can cause.

I really LOVE the Cancer Support Community’s FREE booklet Coping with the Cost of Cancer from their Frankly Speaking About Cancer series. It contains tons of great information on navigating the cost of care like identifying potential costs associated with care; listing questions to ask your health care team that will help estimate costs & figure out where you might need help (before you actually need it… hopefully); finding financial assistance programs; and much more.

Another AMAZING resource to help navigate the financial side of chemo is Chemo101. Check out their financial & insurance section, where patients & caregivers can find information on sources of financial assistance, insurance-related questions, & other resources. They also maintain a list of Patient Assistance Programs (PAPs), which are programs run by pharmaceutical companies that provide FREE medications to people who can not afford to buy their meds. What a GREAT resource!

Wish I had known about these amazing FREE resources at the beginning of our cancer journey, instead of having to learn everything on our own. Sue would have devoured this sort of information (see April 18 post on Managing Insurance & Medical Bills).
Check out the Cancer Support Community & Chemo101…. And please post any information you may have on these & other resources that help to manage the cost of cancer care… Knowledge is power… Share the power PLEASE!

Click here to read Robyn’s full blog, CancerHawk.

About Robyn Stoller

Founder of CancerHawk.com, Robyn Stoller is a patient advocate and champion. Just last year she lost her 47-year-old husband Alan to cancer, but has put their journey to work for others. At each crossroad—from finding the best doctors with the right mentality to accessing obscure (and amazing!) resources—Robyn's gift for research, networking and tireless advocacy and a lot of luck led to just the right places. Now, Robyn’s mission is to help patients and caregivers touched by cancer find the information they need to make informed choices. To get straightforward answers to the questions you haven't yet asked with a dose of humility and humor, visit www.CancerHawk.com…the REAL deal for cancer patients & their caregivers.

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