Mesothelioma patients often struggle to pay the expenses associated with disease treatment because the costs often go far beyond medical bills. Mesothelioma treatment expenditures also often include costs for travel, meals, car rentals and caregivers, among others.

Experts advise asbestos-cancer patients have open and honest discussions with their treatment partners, including doctors and family members, about the expenses associated with the disease. Everyone involved should understand the costs related to treatment and how the bills will be paid.

The cost for any cancer treatment is expensive, even with health insurance. For a rare disease such as mesothelioma, treatment costs can be even more expensive because the disease is difficult to treat and may require specialized services.

Costs Associated with Treatment

Mesothelioma is frequently treated with a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, which are very expensive. Asbestos-cancer specialists must tailor treatment protocols based on individual needs, driving the costs up even further.

Since mesothelioma is such a rare disease and treatments are so individualized, it is difficult to outline exact costs. However, lung cancer treatment expenses are a close approximation for mesothelioma treatment fees.

The American Cancer Society found the average cost for advanced-stage lung cancer treatment was about $280,000, including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Patients with better health insurance plans typically pay co-pays and up to 50 percent of coinsurance, which can total about $12,000 out of pocket. If treatment includes immunotherapy, a promising form of cancer care, the costs can increase another $100,000.

The American Cancer Society’s estimates do not include some ancillary expenditures, or so-called hidden costs, that come with long-term disease management.

Procedures and Services for Mesothelioma Treatment

In general, the following procedures, services and expenditures are associated with mesothelioma treatment:

  • Diagnostic testing
  • Lab work
  • Surgery
  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation
  • Hospital stays
  • Follow-up appointments
  • Medications
  • Alternative treatments
  • Travel expenses
  • Caregiver costs
  • Special diet
  • Mental health services
  • Time off work

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Options for Paying for Medical Expenses

In May 2017, the U.S. Federal Reserve found 44 percent of Americans do not have enough cash to cover a $400 emergency. Most would have to use credit or sell items to cover the expense, the Fed found. When faced with making life-or-death medical decisions, many patients are ill prepared to handle the financial implications. There are several options for covering medical expenses:

Tips to Avoid Medical Debt

Studies have found medical debt accounts for an overwhelming number of bankruptcies in the United States. Mesothelioma patients who are faced with mounting medical expenses have several options for avoiding debt. Some of the leading tips include the following:

How We Can Help

Our Patient Advocates put patients in touch with the services they need and help patients understand all of their available options to pay for treatment and living expenses.

Our free resources include printed literature about the disease and your medical options, instant access to the leading mesothelioma specialists and assistance getting access to financial resources. Contact us now for more information.

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