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How Can I Manage Costs?

Understanding what costs to expect is an important first step in gaining a sense of control.

It is difficult to form a plan for managing costs until you understand what to expect.

Potential expenses that you may want to ask your health care team about are:

  • Physician/Provider
  • Treatment-Related
  • Prescriptions
  • Clinical Trials
  • Home Health Care and Home Hospice Care
  • Rehabilitation Care
  • Private Duty, Long Term and Custodial Care
  • Psychotherapy & Counseling
  • Family and Living
  • Transportation
  • Legal

Help with the Cost of Specific Cancer Drugs

The following list of programs is not exhaustive. We have selected the programs most commonly used by cancer patients. Each company provides assistance only for medications it manufactures. If you are not sure which pharmaceutical company makes the medication(s) you have been prescribed, you can ask your health care team or pharmacist for help. Some companies have more than one patient assistance program.

The information below is meant to be a starting place for gathering information about possible assistance. For more information you can check the website www.needymeds.org or www.pparx.org.

Download List of Pharmaceutical Company Patient Assistant Programs 

Abbott

Abbott Patient Assistance Foundation

Phone: 800-222-6885

Amgen, Inc.

Amgen Assist® 

Phone: 888-427-7478

AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals

AstraZeneca Cancer Support Network

(AZ CSN)

Phone: 1-866-992-9276

Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals

Onyx Pharmaceuticals

REACH (Resources for Expert Assistance and Care Helpline)

Phone: 877-322-4448

Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Boehringer Ingelheim CARES Foundation

Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-556-8317

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

Bristol-Myers Squibb Patient Foundation:

Oncology Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-861-0048

Celgene Corporation

Celgene Patient Support®

Phone: 800-931-8691

Eisai, Inc.

Eisai, Inc. Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 866-613-4724

Eli Lilly & Company

Lilly Cares Foundation

Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-545-6962

Genentech, Inc.

Genentech BioOncology Access Solutions

(Avastin, Herceptin, Rituxan, Tarceva,

XELODA, ZELBORAF)

Phone: 888-249-4918

GlaxoSmithKline

GlaxoSmithKline Commitment to Access

Phone: 866-265-6491

Janssen Ortho Patient Assistance Foundation

Janssen Ortho Patient Assistance

Foundation Patient Assistance Program

Phone: Procrit (800) 553-3851, or for Doxil

(800) 609-1083, or for Zytiga (855) 998-4421

Merck and Company, Inc.

Merck Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-727-5400

Novartis Pharmaceuticals

Novartis Oncology

Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 866-884-5906

Pfizer, Inc.

Phone: 877-744-5675

www.pfizerhelpfulanswers.com

Purdue Pharma

Purdue Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-599-6070

SANOFI

Patient Connection® 

Phone: 888-847-4877

Teva Oncology

Cephalon Oncology Reimbursement

Expertise (CORE)

Phone: 888-587-3263

Community Resources

Your city, county or state government may have helpful resources. To find out more about programs such as Section 8 Housing, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Senior Housing, contact your local department of Social Services. Faith-based organizations and some hospitals may also provide help. The website www.survivorshipatoz.org is a great source for additional information.

You may also call CSC’s toll free Cancer Support Helpline® (1-888-793-9355). Our call counselors are available Monday-Friday from 9am-9pm ET to answers your questions and link you to valuable information.

Other Possible Sources to Help Pay Cancer Costs

Most people still find unexpected expenses even after maximizing health insurance benefits and income options. Depending on your situation, you may have other options for income:

  • Retirement funds: Such as a 401(k) or IRA.
  • Reverse mortgage: A loan to a homeowner that allows the owner to get cash from the equity in the property as one lump sum or multiple payments.
  • Life insurance: There are a variety of ways to obtain cash from your life insurance; different options may be available depending on the type of policy you have.

Keep in mind that options such as cashing in retirement accounts or life insurance policies should be considered very carefully. It is recommended that you seek the advice of a financial professional or advisor when making these decisions. However, for some people who have accrued substantial debt through the course of treatment, these options can provide welcome relief.

The strain of being in debt can be tremendous. If bill collectors are calling or you are receiving notices that bills have been sent to collection, www.survivorshipatoz.org has excellent suggestions for managing medical debt and negotiating with creditors.

Coping with the cost of care will look different for each person. Sometimes declaring bankruptcy is the best option. Sometimes individuals can negotiate with creditors to either decrease the amount owed or lengthen the period of the loan. A good financial advisor can help you identify options if you find you are accruing substantial medical debt.

Download Tips for Choosing a Financial Advisor