COBRA coverage about to end

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wubba555
wubba555 Member Posts: 1
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I was laid off from my job in February 2009. I immediately enrolled in my company's COBRA coverage. July 1st my ex-employer changed the insurance plan to a "lower" contract. With the new contract I pay my COBRA premiums, have a $1500.00 deductible and have 80/20 coverage (I have to pay 20% plus co-pays for everything). The end of July I was diagnosed with Stage 2, Grade III breast cancer. I have been able to keep up the payments so far because of the 35/65% Obama Stimulus assistance. (I pay 35% of my COBRA which amounts to $357.00 per month). May 1st will be the end of the 35/65% and my COBRA payment will be $821.00 per month. I know this is confusing so far, but... my main concern is that my 18 months of COBRA will end August 30th this year. I called Horizon and for me to transfer from my "group" COBRA to individual coverage, my payment September 1st will be approximately $1200.00 per month (plus the deductible, 20% and co-pays). I have already completed the 1st rounds of chemo, a double mastectomy with initial reconstruction (expanders). I am getting ready to start a 48 week course of Herceptin which includes 13 weeks of chemo. And I will still need to have the 2nd surgery to have the expanders exchanged. Any suggestions for finanlcial aid? At this rate I don't expect to be able to get/look for a new job until at least March or April of next year.
I have been very lucky with my treatments, had no pain with surgery and am absolutely positive I can beat the Cancer, but worry constantly about the insurance coverage. (I am 55 years old, not old for Medicare)
Thanks in advance for any suggestions, contacts, etc.
Kim

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  • Mama G
    Mama G Member Posts: 762
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    Check your ACS branch office
    They are the experts in this area. I have a friend who has to work just to pay her COBRA payment! It's well over 1K per month because of her pre existing conditions. So sad.
  • Flakey_Flake
    Flakey_Flake Member Posts: 130
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    Anyone and Everyone
    Besides checking with your ACS branch office, check also woth your county health department. I went through the same thing, only a little more twisted. My county has a "Well Woman Program" that will pay all my medical bills 100% (and has vision and dental benifits too. It is actually a form of Medicare, and I am 57 years old.) I also applied for Social Security Disability, which I was awarded (BC and Depression) Also contact your clinic's patient services. Sometimes they can find you some help also. My clinic had it's own insurance coverage, based on income, to help people in such circumstances. But the first person I went to was my oncologist. I told him I wasn't about to start my second round of chemo if I weren't sure I could finish it. He was able to light some fires in the patient services department. I guess the main thing is to contact anyone and everyone who you think might be an advocate for you. You must have piled up a bunch of bills with the 20/80 coverage you had - maybe you can come away with something better than what you had. Just don't be afraid to ask for help. You have probably contributed to the system for many years. Maybe it's time the system contributed to you now. If one person or department can't do anything for you, they will refer you to someone who can. I wish you all the best, and hope you will let us know what you find.
  • DianeBC
    DianeBC Member Posts: 3,881 Member
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    Mama G said:

    Check your ACS branch office
    They are the experts in this area. I have a friend who has to work just to pay her COBRA payment! It's well over 1K per month because of her pre existing conditions. So sad.

    The ACS is the best place to
    The ACS is the best place to check first. Also, the Susan B. Komen site has information on financial help. You might check that out too. Good luck to you!