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Posts: 8
Joined: May 2018

How do you pay for your cancer treatments ?  

The cost is sky high !!

Mikenh's picture
Posts: 779
Joined: Oct 2017

Insurance covers most costs for me. For what they don't cover I just pay it.

Annabelle41415's picture
Posts: 6709
Joined: Feb 2009

My insurance covered most of it, but my out of pocket cost deductible was still about $10,000 a year plus monthly insurance payments.  It is expensive, but ask the hospital if you can be on a payment plan.  That was the only way that was afordable but still expensive for me.  See if you can get help from the ACS.  They are supposed to help people, but I've not heard of them helping many.  They get a lot of donations, they should be willing to help or direct you.


Posts: 54
Joined: Aug 2018

My treatment costs over the past 18 months have not quite hit that number yet, but they will by the end of this year or early 2019.  If it weren't for good insurance, I'd be bankrupt.  

If you're rich, you have the means to pay.  If you're dirt poor, medicaid should cover most of it.  If you're somewhere in the middle, you better have good insurance.


Trubrit's picture
Posts: 5457
Joined: Jan 2013

I have always been the one to pay the bills, so when I was going through treatment, I sat on the couch, like a wet vegetable and watched them pile up on the kitchen table.  I never got a late notice, thuogh I was late in paying many of them. 

Once I started to regain my strenght, I contacted the various hospitals and Doctors; so many of them - ER, GP, GI, Surgeon, Oncologist, Radiation Oncologist, Diagnositic Center, Big city hospital & little city hospital - all of their bills waiting to be pain. Talk about overwhelming. 

As a person who hates to be in debt, it was obvious that I could not just 'pay them off'  so I called each one and set up a payment plan. They are willing to do that, and at least for my situation, there was no interest on top. 

It didn't happen overnight, it didnt' happen in a year, but I got them paid off eventually. 

Money should be one of the least of your worries.  Just tell yourself that the bills will get paid, and that you don't have to stress over it. No stress, remember. Cancer loves stress. 

My husband also had good insurance, so I wasn't footing the whole bill, which basically, would NEVER have been paid in my lifetime, even if I lived to be 100.


BRHMichigan's picture
Posts: 368
Joined: Jul 2017

I opted for something a little unconventional to help alleviate financial stress. If you have a good life insurance policy, they will pay out up to half in advance if you have a terminal illness. It was psychologically a little tough to ask a physician fill out the form, but I made the decision and was approced within 30 days. Got a big check and use it for what isn't covered, along with a few much needed home improvements. It has been such a relief for our family. 

airborne72's picture
Posts: 281
Joined: Sep 2012

Great idea Beth.  I have been blessed with insurance coverage, although I sacrificed during my early years while in the military and survived long enough to reach the Medicare qualification event (old age), I have often wondered why more cancer victims (I don't like using that word) don't establish a Go Fund Me page.  For goodness sake, if people will donate to deceivious attorneys who have less than admirable ethics and who got caught, then an average citizen who is struggling with a life threatening disease is MOST deserving.


BRHMichigan's picture
Posts: 368
Joined: Jul 2017

For me it's a pride thing. I can't imagine ever creating a Go Fund Me. And wouldn't it be devastating if nobody donated?! Lol. 3 of my 4 sibling also have given me varying gifts of money, which was such a blessing. 



abita's picture
Posts: 1021
Joined: Dec 2017

I actually had a big fight with a cousin. He suggested it. I said I was using all my energy to work, and that the fatigue and worry were overwhelming. He told me that if it were him that no matter if he had to crawl to his computer, that he would have set up a go fund me. I was so mad at him.

BRHMichigan's picture
Posts: 368
Joined: Jul 2017

Some people just seem to have an easier time adking for money. Maybe it's how we were raised or something, but I just don't have it in me to ask for peoples' money to help me. I totally understand.

airborne72's picture
Posts: 281
Joined: Sep 2012


I totally agree with your feelings.  I even have difficulty asking a neighbor to help me move a piece of furniture.  I don't like feeling beholden to someone and I strongly believe that each of us should make our own way until we absolutely can't go any further.

My intent regarding the Go Fund Me account for was someone else to do it as a favor/honor/courtesy.  Instead of someone asking what they can do, they can privately and discreetly raise the money to anonymously assist someone else who is suffering from this disease AND from the financial devastation it causes.

I considered doing this very thing for my brother-in-law when he was run-over by a vehicle while standing in a bank lobby, but there are extinuating circumstances.


Posts: 253
Joined: Jul 2017

I pay everything in cash.  My insurance didn't even cover 1/10 of my bills.  I was lucky to have saved some money but now I'm starting to drain the family savings.  Its hard being in my place.  Not only do I have to think of the cancer, but I have to think how to pay for the next chemo cycle.   My strength and faith is quite being challenged but I'm still positive and strong.  I can do this!  I'm accepting donations anyone! lol

tanstaafl's picture
Posts: 1299
Joined: Oct 2010

Cutting cash costs early on is essential, before you get painted into a corner, cash crunched.   

In our case, we use inexpensive foreign generic drugs (especially generic versions of UFT, leucovorin and celecoxib; aspirin and cimetidine are already cheap in the US).  Our chemo drug, tegafur-uracil (UFT) was nicer anyway and mixed well with off label and integrative chemistries. 

Tunadog's picture
Posts: 235
Joined: Mar 2017

Then I got Medicare and a Supplment. A million dollars for sure.

Interesting to read the bills. I lucked out.

 I don't wish this on anybody.


darcher's picture
Posts: 299
Joined: Jun 2017

  I bought the cheap version of Kaiser but it worked out OK.  Compaitivly speaking t was nice only having to come up with about 7k last year.  The actual bill was something on the order of 300k or more.  Co-pays and such are what gets me.  

It's not just the cancer treatments.  Now I've got dental bills out the wazoo and it's approaching the same 7k.  Now I need implants or at least dentures.  I can't believe it.  I'm short 5 molars and chewing is a real chore.  I used to have perfect teeth.  Now, I am the dentists gold mine. They know me by name now.

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