The Financial Toll of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a devastating diagnosis.  It takes an emotional, physical, and financial toll. A triple threat.  It doesn’t just affect the individual who receives the diagnosis.  The immediate family, extended family, and friends are also affected.  

Financial Fallout

Forbes magazine estimates that medical expenditures for breast cancer in 2020 will reach $16.5 billion.  Costs per individual incident range from a few thousand to over $200,000.  Even with medical insurance, coming up with the money to cover the deductible and the copays can break the average family’s budget.  A lot of people find it challenging to afford the monthly premiums for medical insurance.  The insurance is so expensive, they can’t afford to actually use it.  

Fewer and fewer companies are offering medical insurance as a job benefit for full-time employees.  If you are working one or more part-time jobs trying to make ends meet, you are on your own for medical insurance.  Even with governmental assistance, many people are still unable to afford medical insurance premiums.  This means a large segment of the population has no insurance at all.  Imagine trying to come up with $200,000, when you can’t even afford insurance.

Then there are the hidden costs of treatment people don’t think about right away.  Some treatments require you to attend daily sessions that can last several hours, for a couple of weeks at a time.  

  • Does your job provide sick time?  Will you have to miss work, and the pay that goes with it, just to get your treatment? 
  • Will you be able to keep your job?
  • Will you have gas money? Can your car handle the extra wear and tear? Will you have to Uber or take a taxi to get to your treatments? 
  • Will you have to arrange for a child or elder care in order to go to your treatments?

Sadly, many people end up having to choose between paying for their treatment or:

  • Putting food on the table.
  • Paying the power bill.
  • Paying for medical care for another family member.
  • Paying the rent or mortgage.

Surviving breast cancer is a ticket to a lifetime of ongoing medical bills.  Side effects of the treatments can last for years.  Monitoring to make sure it doesn’t return is an ongoing expense.  The average ongoing costs for surviving breast cancer range from $1,500 to $3,500 per year, with insurance.  

How to avoid this Financial Nightmare?

So how do you avoid draining your savings and retirement accounts, getting so far in debt it looks like there is no way out, losing your home and having your family end up on the streets?  EARLY DETECTION!  Find that sucker early before it even gets started.  Medical research has made great strides in creating new ways to detect breast cancer.  Studies show a 95% survival rate for breast cancer that is caught early.  

Private pay labs are also a blessing for budget-conscious patients.  Even if you aren’t strapped for cash, do you really want to be paying hundreds of dollars more to have the same test done at the doctor’s office or hospital?  You can go to a private pay lab and request one of two blood tests be conducted.  The BRCA Gene or Ca 27-29 test will be able to detect any breast cancer even BEFORE a tumor has formed.  The dreaded Mammogram and self-detection methods only find breast cancer AFTER it has formed a lump.  

The sooner the cancer is detected, the sooner treatment can begin.  The sooner the cancer is detected, the less harsh and invasive the treatment.  All of which means, it will be significantly less extensive and expensive to treat.  

Early detection will save your life and your lifestyle.  Protect your family from the devastating financial fallout of a breast cancer diagnosis.  If you live in the Springfield area, contact IPE Screening today to schedule your BRCA Gene or Ca 27-29 blood test.