According to The National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results Program, prostate cancer affects more than 2 million men in the United States. There are 233,000 new cases of prostate cancer each year.
Apart from the physical and emotional affects of prostate cancer, patients can also experience high financial burden. In 2011 a study entitled ‘The economic burden of prostate cancer’ found that the cost of prostate cancer for patients were found to be approximately $10,612 for the initial phase after diagnosis, $2134 for continuing care and $33,691 in the last year of life.
Men without health insurance can find the financial burden even worst. According to a study published in Urology journal in 2014, the price of surgery as a form of treatment to prostate cancer can range from $10,000 to $135,000. Factors that can increase the out of pocket cost for prostate cancer patients include the hospital patients choose to use and the stage or severity of the cancer.
10 Resources For Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance
1. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Screening Costs
For patients who require prostate cancer screenings and are unable to cover the out of pocket cost for these services, there are a number of non-profit organizations and bodies that offer free screenings services.
The first is called Zero. Patients will be able to receive free screenings through the events they run. The Prostate Conditions Education Council also has a list of screenings available online. You will have to find an appropriate event date and location that will suit your needs.
Another alternative to find financial assistance for screening costs is to ask your local hospital. Local hospitals are able to provide free screenings to test whether you have prostate cancer. Similarly, you can also contact your local prostate cancer support groups for more support in screening.
2. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Treatment Costs
Treatment costs such as medication and hospital stays can be very expensive to deal with, particularly if you are a low income earner or are unable to continue working throughout the duration of your treatment plan.
Patients with prostate cancer can find assistance from Johnson & Johnson Patient Assist Foundation, a non-profit organization. Here patients can receive resources and referrals for free products and prescription coverage.
Patients can also seek further assistance through co-payment plans from pharmaceutical companies that can often offer discounts or memberships for free or more affordable medication.
3. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Transportation Costs
Patients who require financial assistance for transportation to and from the hospital or appointments may be able to seek assistance from a number of organizations.
For prostate cancer patients who live in remote or far locations compared to the location of the medical provider, Air Care Alliance provides free flight services. This service is for patients who require emergency care or require to travel in order to receive medical treatment and attention. Similarly, Air Charity Network also provides a similar service that is also free of charge.
The National Patient Travel Helpline or NPTC gives financial assistance to prostate cancer patients by giving access to medical air transportation resources throughout the United States. This is an ideal place to contact if you are looking for a free service but are unable to locate one nearby.
4. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Prescriptions And Medical Supplies
When it comes to prescriptions and medical supplies, patients can find it difficult to cover the ongoing cost for these medical expenses. Partnership for Prescription Assistance can help patients who do not have prescription drug coverage gain access to much needed medication. Most medication access via this service is free of charge or partly free, where the patient will receive a substantial discount.
Patients can also seek assistance through the federal and state health insurance program known as Medicaid. Also referred to as Medical Assistance, this program has been established to help prostate cancer patients get access to medication, particularly for those who are uninsured at the time. Each state will have varied requirements to be eligible for the program. It is best to contact our local office more details on how you can start accessing your medication.
5. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Bills And Daily Living Expenses
Not many organizations will offer financial assistance for everyday bills and living expenses. However, the United Way may be able to refer you to a community group or government program that may be suitable.
6. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Legal Issues
During your course of treatment, you may find it vital to seek legal advice. A common issue that can arise are complications with your medical bills, where you require legal and professional help in order to challenge or negotiate your medical bills.
In addition, patients can also come across barriers or problems with their health insurance claims.
The Cancer Legal Resource Center also known as CLRC is a joint program of the Disability Rights Legal Center and Loyola Law School that provides legal services free of charge. This service is available to all cancer patients, including patients with prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer patients can receive confidential information, support and resources to help with any legal issues surrounding your cancer treatment.
Patient Advocate Foundation is another example of an organization that can provide financial assistance in terms of legal aid. Here patients will be able to receive legal assistance for insurance assess issues, employment issues and any legal issues regarding the access to health care.
7. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Medical Debt
With the financial burden of prostate cancer being so high for patients, getting access to prostate cancer financial assistance for medical debt is important.
Patients can seek help from The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). ASCO offers prostate cancer patients access to vital information on how to manage your finances and the cost of cancer care. This is a free resource and guide to help you manage your finances better.
The Cancer Financial Assistance Coalition (CFAC) also provides a similar service by helping prostate cancer patients with management of their finances. Also, CancerCare, a large and national non-profit organization body can also provide free professional assistance from counseling, education and referrals to help patients deal with any medical debt.
8. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Housing Assistance
If you are receiving treatment and care outside of your state or require free accommodation or housing for the duration of your treatment plan, there are free financial assistance options available to you.
The American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge is one example where cancer patients are able to access free housing while undergoing treatment and care. The Hope Lodge is available in select areas and only provide temporary housing subject on availability.
Another example is the National Association of Hospital Hospitality Houses. The National Association of Hospital Hospitality Houses, Inc. is a charity organization that provides cancer patients lodging services for patients as well as their families.
9. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Co-Payments
Co-Payment plans offer patients with prostate cancer the ability to access medication and other medical treatment at a lower cost. Programs such as the one offered by CancerCare called Co-Payment Assistance Foundation, provides patients assistance with their co-payments to gain access to health insurance. Patients can cover the cost of their medication for cancer treatment through this system. CancerCare also provides a specific program for patients with prostate cancer.
Patient Advocate Foundation also provides relief for patients who are struggling to cover their co-payments in order to access their insurance benefits.
10. Prostate Cancer Financial Assistance For Medical Expenses
Patients who are still in need of further assistance financially can use online fundraising to raise funds for medical expenses.
The benefit of doing so is that you will be able to fundraise for a total amount that you require for the course of your treatment. You will also be able to determine the best use of the funds, including for transportation costs, medication or for living expenses.
A free service online called PeoplePledge provides prostate cancer patients the ability to create and run a online fundraiser for free. Patients will sign up at no charge and be able to launch a fundraiser free of charge.
You will then be given a URL link which you share to friends and family through email, social networks like Facebook and Twitter and word of mouth. This URL link leads your supporters to a fundraising page online, where they can make a donation to help you with your medical expenses.
1) What are the key statistics about prostate cancer?: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostatecancer/detailedguide/prostate-cancer-key-statistics
2) SEER Stat Fact Sheets: Prostate Cancer: http://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/prost.html
3) The economic burden of prostate cancer: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21884356
4) Cost of Prostate Cancer Surgery Varies Widely: http://www.webmd.com/prostate-cancer/news/20140619/cost-of-prostate-cancer-surgery-varies-widely-in-us
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