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Health Insurance Marketplace Opens for Business

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

As we have discussed, today is the day that the Health Insurance Marketplaces open so that consumers can compare plans and shop for affordable insurance coverage. The Marketplaces will make health insurance coverage available to the 48 million Americans who are currently uninsured.

As you have heard in the news, Congress is gridlocked over funding for the government and its activities for the new fiscal year (which also starts today). As a result, the federal government is partially shut down.

The Cancer Insurance Checklist: Your guide to shopping for insurance on the marketplace/ exchange

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

As implementation of the health reform law (the Affordable Care Act) continues, individuals that do not have insurance through an employer or government plan like Medicare or Medicaid will be required to purchase insurance on state-based Health Insurance Marketplaces, or Exchanges. Open enrollment begins October 1st for coverage that will begin as early as January 1, 2014.

As we mentioned previously, Cancer Support Community has participated in a partnership of 19 cancer and advocacy organizations to develop the Cancer Insurance Checklist.

CSC’s Cancer Policy Institute supports FDA Access to User Fees

Friday, September 20, 2013

On September 10, 2013 the Cancer Support Community’s Cancer Policy Institute sent a letter of thanks and support to those Members of Congress who recently introduced legislation to protect the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) user fees from sequestration.

In 2012, Congress passed the FDA Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA). As a result, new fees – paid by drug and device manufacturers – were instituted to provide the FDA with a much needed funding stream to provide for improvements to their drug and device review processes. This dedicated funding stream was designed to facilitate timely patient access to safe and effective new and generic medicines, medical devices and diagnostics.

Meet Laura, a Cancer Support Helpline Counselor

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Newly diagnosed and don’t know where to turn? Longtime survivor and looking for new resources? The toll-free Cancer Support Helpline (1-888-793-9355) is available to help you navigate your cancer journey. Professionals like Laura, one of our call center counselors, are equipped to help you find the support you need!

We asked Laura a few questions so that our readers can learn more about her story and how the Cancer Support Helpline may be helpful for them.

Affordability of Insurance Plans Offered on the Health Insurance Marketplaces

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

As implementation of the health reform law (the Affordable Care Act) continues, individuals that do not have insurance through an employer or government plan like Medicare or Medicaid, will be required to purchase insurance on state-based Health Insurance Marketplaces, or exchanges. Open enrollment begins October 1st for coverage that will begin as early as January 1, 2014.

As we have written about before, one unknown about the plans offered in the Marketplaces has been the out-of-pocket costs to consumers, both for premiums and health care co-pays, deductibles and coinsurance.

August is Health Literacy Month

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

When diagnosed with cancer, you hear many different medical terms. At first these terms seem like alphabet soup or a long-ago algebra problem. Navigating the world of cancer care and its terminology is a daunting task for anyone.

Heath literacy is defined as obtaining, communicating, processing and understanding health information and services to make appropriate health decisions. A person who has trouble finding and utilizing the correct health information that they need has limited health literacy. This is a crucial skill for people to have in order to understand and cope with a cancer diagnosis and their treatment options.

Affordable Care Act in Action

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Cancer Support Community recognized the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the tenets of the Affordable Care Act and, in particular, felt that insurance provisions of the law such as removal of lifetime caps, the removal of pre-existing condition discrimination and the option for dependents to stay on their parents’ health plans until the age of 26 would be of benefit for the cancer community. CSC was quick to point out that the important work would, in fact, be in the details of implementation of the law.

What to do When There’s a Drug Shortage

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

In recent years the number of drugs that are in short supply has been increasing, including drugs used to treat cancer. Most of these shortages are for drugs that are injected, or given intravenously. Some of these shortages are short-term and are caused by problems with shipping and ordering. Sometimes these shortages last longer. This is especially true when the shortage is caused by problems in the manufacturing of the drugs. If you have been diagnosed with cancer and are getting chemotherapy as part of your treatment, it is understandable that you would be concerned about a possible drug shortage.

Getting Help Through Uncertain Paths

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I lost my mother to cancer just a month after I turned 24. Following her diagnosis of stage 4 esophageal cancer, she braved through more than two years of aggressive chemotherapy, radiation and surgery.

Losing people you love to cancer is of course tremendous to bear. Ask anyone who has experienced it—what’s said will likely bring you to tears. Stories of dashed hopes, of unanswered prayers, of lost time could shake your faith to the core. They knell of unavoidable pain as well as of our own fragility.

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