Hearing that you or someone you love has cancer can be overwhelming. Many people ask “Will my insurance cover my care?” or “Will my family be burdened with huge debt?” Managing the cost of health care today can be challenging for the 12 million cancer survivors and the 1.5 million diagnosed each year in theUnited States.
It’s hard to talk about money, but open conversations about the cost of cancer care can help you become more informed about resources available to you, and could even help you reduce the cost of your care. Below are some tips to coping with the cost of cancer care:
- Ask about what costs to expect. It is difficult to form a plan without knowing what expenses you will incur. Talk to your health care team about the financial aspects of cancer and what you might expect.
- Learn about your insurance coverage. Talk to your insurance provider about how to best use your benefits.
- Ask your healthcare team about the likelihood of your treatment affecting your ability to work or return to the workplace. If you need to take time off or reduce the hours you work, talk to your healthcare team and your employer about resources available to you during this time.
- Learn more about resources that can help you pay for prescription medications or even curb the cost of treatment, such as grants and nonprofit organizations.
- Remember you are not alone. If you feel overwhelmed when discussing costs, remember there are resources available to help you.
In conjunction with the release of the third edition of Frankly Speaking About Cancer: Coping with the Cost of Care, CSC will focus on Coping with the Cost of Care on our weekly radio show, Frankly Speaking About Cancer, on Tuesday, January 31, 2012 at 4 pm EST here, or listen later through our archives. Frankly Speaking About Cancer: Coping with the Cost of Care is a free education program designed to inform and empower patients and their family members with the information and tools needed to more effectively navigate the financial and legal aspects of cancer care. Click here to learn more or to order a free copy of the book.