Financial distress common among cancer patients –even for those with insurance

This week the Advisory Board Company featured a recent study on the financial concerns of cancer patients that extends to those with health insurance. 

The study included 400 cancer patients who were asked questions that related to their levels of financial distress. Nearly all of the participants had insurance. The findings included:

  • About 30 percent of patients were concerned about paying for their cancer care; nearly 48 percent were concerned about health care costs 
  • About 22 percent of patients stated that their family was making sacrifices to pay for their treatment
  • Only about 8 percent reported that their insurance adequately covered their health care costs

Both the authors of the study and the Advisory Board Company recommend identifying patients with financial distress and connecting them to the support and resources they need.

You can find the abstract for the study, “Cost Concerns of Patients with Cancer,” here. It appeared in print in the September issue of the Journal of Oncology Practice.

The Polaris Oncology Distress Management System asks patients about whether they have financial concerns. For patients who indicate they do, the system can automatically connect them to the appropriate resources using its triggers, alerts and automated referral capabilities.