You are a cancer patient. Not only does the disease cost you emotionally, it costs you financially. Everything about cancer is expensive. Especially chemotherapy. The cost for chemotherapies is skyrocketing. In short, cancer is a minefield of financial issues.
But you have health insurance. All you have to pay are deductibles and co-pays. No problem. If your health insurance is 80/20, they pay 80% and you only pay 20%.
If your chemo costs upwards of $100,000 a year that means you have to pay 20,000 each year!? The cancer patients who need specific medications yet can’t afford them is in a bad place. There are Patient Assistance Programs (PAP) that can help.
The problem with Patient Assistance Programs is that Pharmaceutical companies benefit from helping cancer patients pay for their expensive drugs. How? Read the New York Times article linked and excerpted below.
Financial toxicity is a very real side-effect of a cancer diagnosis. To talk to an experienced cancer survivor and cancer coach who understands the ins and outs of cancer financial issues, scroll down the page, post a question or a comment and I will reply to you ASAP.
“As drug prices have soared in recent years and insurers have increased co-payments, a new type of charity has blossomed to fill a vital niche — helping patients pay the steep out-of-pocket costs for their medicines…
But the largest of these co-payment assistance charities, the Chronic Disease Fund, is now in turmoil after questions have arisen about its relationship with a pharmaceutical company that is itself under investigation for its marketing practices.
The practice is casting light on what has long been an open secret: The bulk of the contributions to these charities come from the pharmaceutical companies. The foundations not only help hundreds of thousands of patients a year, they also raise drug company sales and profits.
After all, if a patient cannot afford out-of-pocket costs of $5,000 for a $100,000-a-year drug, the drug company gets nothing. But if the manufacturer or the charity pays the $5,000, the patient gets the drug and the company receives $95,000 from the patient’s insurance company or Medicare…”.