Cancer patients and the people who love them have plenty of things that keep them up at night. Fears about the future range from concerns about the effect of medical treatment to whether they’ll be there to share in their family’s future. These worries are natural and to-be-expected; what is not at all natural is the need to worry about how to pay for medical care and all other expenses that a cancer diagnosis brings. These worries may not seem right or fair, but they are an everyday fact of life for those living with cancer.
Even patients with robust health insurance coverage and higher-income brackets can find themselves stymied by the hidden costs of the disease. Copays and out of pocket expenses add up quickly, and when you combine these additional expenses with the very real possibility of having to take time away from work and losing much-needed income, the financial burdens become very heavy.
Many people liquidate life savings, take out loans or turn to friends or family for support, while others look to organizations that work to provide financial support for cancer patients. Cancer patients in Florida are advised to take advantage of all resources available to them to ease financial stress. Here are some of the financial resources available to cancer patients in Florida.
Financial Resources for Cancer Patients in Florida
Fifth Season Financial
About Fifth Season Financial: A licensed life insurance loan lender in business since 2007 and member of the Better Business Bureau. Fifth Season Financial’s Funds for Living Program provides money to people living with late-stage cancer by using their life insurance policy as collateral. They also work with patients who have congestive heart failure, COPD, ALS, MLS and other serious health conditions. The goal of the program is to help relieve financial stress so that people living with an advanced stage illness can focus on what is most important in their lives.
There is no credit check and no income requirement for the Funds For Living Program, but recipients must have been diagnosed with a life-threatening or advanced-stage illness, such as Stage III or IV cancers; other recipients have been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and advanced stage heart disease, among other conditions.
To qualify, you must also own a life insurance policy that carries a value of at least $75,000, or $200,000 for group policies, and that policy must be issued in the United States. You must be a permanent resident of the United States. (Fifth Season works with a Canadian partner to offer its Funds For Living Program to Canadian citizens.)
Florida Cancer Specialists Foundation
About Florida Cancer Specialists Foundation: Florida Cancer Specialists Foundation was created to help patients who need financial assistance while undergoing treatment. Thru its AVAIL Fund, the Foundation allows those fighting their battle with cancer to concentrate on recovery rather than their overdue rent, mortgage, electric, or water bill.
Breast Cancer Financial Assistance Fund
About Breast Cancer Financial Assistance Fund: The mission of the Breast Cancer Financial Assistance Fund is to provide financial aid to assist patients suffering with breast cancer. As funds are available through this special project of the Cancer Fund of America, Inc. the organization provides assistance with the purchase of Prosthesis and Leisure Bras. They also provide patients with $50 per month for a period of three months.
About Cancer Care: Nonprofit organization that provides financial assistance to those with cancer, as well as connections with other financial assistance resources. Funding is available for transportation, home care, and child care.
About HealthWell Foundation: HealthWell’s goal is to provide patients living with chronic and life-altering illnesses financial assistance in paying prescription drug copayments, deductibles, and health insurance premiums.
National Association of Hospital Hospitality Houses, Inc.
About National Association of Hospital Hospitality Houses, Inc.: Provides lodging and support services to patients, families and their loved ones who are receiving medical treatment far from home.
Tom Coughlin Jay Fund
About Tom Coughlin Jay Fund: The fund’s mission is to help families tackle childhood cancer by providing comprehensive financial, emotional and practical support.
Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Co-Pay Assistance Program
About LLS: LLS is the leading source of free, highly specialized blood cancer information, education and support for patients, survivors, families and healthcare professionals. We touch patients in their communities through our chapters across the U.S. and Canada. We advocate for blood cancer survivors and their families, helping patients navigate their cancer treatments and ensuring they have access to quality, affordable and coordinated care. The program helps with both insurance premiums and co-payments. Assistance is provided to cancer patients based on proof of inability to pay by the National Cancer Institute and at CancerNet, which is run by ASCO (American Society of Clinical Oncology).
Patient Advocate Foundation Co-Pay Relief
About Patient Advocate Foundation Co-Pay Relief: National organization providing direct financial assistance to make prescription drug copayments. This program is aimed at those with insurance, including Medicare Part D, and helps patients diagnosed with many types of cancer, including brain tumors. Assistance is provided to cancer patients based on proof of inability to pay by the National Cancer Institute and at CancerNet, which is run by ASCO (American Society of Clinical Oncology).