Laid off before Dx

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CF_69
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Dec 22, 2018 9:44 pm

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby CF_69 » Fri May 31, 2019 4:00 pm

I don’t know anything about immunotherapy and hopefully I never need to.

You’re right about the cost of drugs. My province covers chemotherapy if it’s administered at the hospital, but not if you take it home. Surely there are plenty of examples like that.

I agree with you that the best treatments should be made available to everyone. Getting a serious illness can break you financially no matter where you live I guess.
47 year old male
Distal sigmoid near rectosigmoid junction adjacent to upper rectum
Adenocarcinoma
2.8 x 1.8 x 3.5 cm
G2
T3N0M0 after pathology
CEA 1.9
Xeloda / radiation x 25
Laparoscopic LAR April 2019
0 of 12 nodes
Stage 2A
4 cycles of adjuvant Xeloda
MRI on liver for 2mm hypodensity not suspicious.

weisssoccermom
Posts: 5956
Joined: Thu May 10, 2007 2:32 pm
Location: Pacific NW

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby weisssoccermom » Fri May 31, 2019 11:28 pm

Please, keep the COBRA. I can't tell you how many people I talked to who have lost their job/retired (and were able to keep COBRA) but didn't keep their COBRA because of the expense. They opted for an Obamacare policy instead. Subsidies aside, there are some HUGE differences between employer sponsored (including COBRA) plans and those purchased on an exchange. One of the biggest differences is the cost of seeing the doctor. BEWARE: MOST exchange policies (aka Obamacare policies) do NOT pay just the copay for the doctor visit until you meet the deductible. Totally different for most employer sponsored plans. With a plan from your employer, most people pay the $15 - $30 copay to the (in network) doctor and that's that. Yes, there is the CO-INSURANCE payment for services like: radiology, lab tests, surgery, PT (in some cases), etc. but at least you know that the doctor visits just incur the copay. GENERALLY, not so with exchange issued policies. Just be aware of that and read the fine print CAREFULLY! If you and your family have been accustomed to the typical employer sponsored plan that simply requires the copay for doctor visits.....you may not realize that most exchange plans don't follow those same rules. READ CAREFULLY when the copays start to kick in. You may rethink your opinion of a particular plan when you realize that the $20 copay sounds great BUT you first have to pay the $3000 deductible before that copay benefit kicks in!

As for your kids and college, I second the idea that they MUST contact the FINANCIAL AID office NOW and explain the situation. Have you submitted a FAFSA for them? If not, get on the stick and get that in NOW! They (or you) may qualify for a loan to help with their education. While I am a huge proponent for getting a 4 year degree, if it is going to bankrupt you.....think very carefully. State schools offer good choices as well. It may not be the place your kiddos want to go but in the end, it may be a much more viable option.
Dx 6/22/2006 IIA rectal cancer
6 wks rad/Xeloda -finished 9/06
1st attempt transanal excision 11/06
11/17/06 XELOX 1 cycle
5 months Xeloda only Dec '06 - April '07
10+ blood clots, 1 DVT 1/07
transanal excision 4/20/07 path-NO CANCER CELLS!
NED now and forever!
Perform random acts of kindness

WarriorSpouse
Posts: 197
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2016 9:02 pm

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby WarriorSpouse » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:35 pm

I checked the Social Security Webpage today. It is called "Compassionate Allowance."
Here is a link to the requirements. Good luck with the process going forward.
https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0423022215
WS
D/H 47 years old, 10/2014, Stage IV M/CRC, nodes 12/15, para-aortic, 5 cm sigmoid resection, positive Virchow. KRAS mut, MSS, Highly Differentiated, Lynch Neg, 5FU/LV and Avastin 1 YR (Oxi for 5 months), Zeloda/Bev since 01/2016. 02/2019 recurrence para-nodes, back to 5FU/LV Oxy/Bev. It is working again. "...Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other."-Walter Elliot

weisssoccermom
Posts: 5956
Joined: Thu May 10, 2007 2:32 pm
Location: Pacific NW

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby weisssoccermom » Sun Jun 02, 2019 1:04 pm

I'm not trying to be confrontational here BUT.....the following statement is NOT correct for every situation:

"In exchange for those $12k you get access to any approved therapies, limited wait times compared to other health systems and access to top oncologists."


If you live in a state that runs its own exchange, you are bound to purchase insurance via that particular state exchange. Many policies don't cover every 'approved' therapy.....the policy just doesn't do it and yes, I have friends who have found that to be the case. Not only that but not every ACA policy covers 'access to top oncologists'....they simply don't. Too often, a person is restricted to what doctors are 'in network' or are approved by the particular plan. Not every state offers a ton of options for people purchasing ACA plans. I'm NOT saying ACA plans are all bad....but the more affordable ones do tend to have higher deductibles, and as I mentioned earlier, for the most part, those deductibles MUST be met first before any care is covered. That can be a LOT of money for someone who doesn't have an unlimited supply of money. In addition, IF the person qualifies for a subsidy, that subsidy is ONLY available on certain, middle of the road plans. In other words, the GOLD plans or better....the ones that more closely emulate the traditional employer sponsored plan....are 'off limits' if you are getting a subsidy. Sure, you can purchase them, but most often, if you do....no subsidy!

It's difficult to tell from the original poster's signature what the diagnosis is. It could be a stage III or stage IV, depending on where the suspicious lymph nodes are located. Medicare/SS disability may or may not be an option at this point in the game. Even IF the OP has a stage IV diagnosis, Medicare won't kick in for two years so best to keep the COBRA for as long as possible.

To the OP....I wish you the best of luck. Cancer is an insidious disease and the monetary issues are just one part of the equation. Look at ALL the options for health insurance and make decisions responsibly. While the cost of insurance is most definitely a major issue, please look carefully at other things.....deductibles, networks, drug coverage.....all of it. Make sure that even your present GP is covered.....because honestly, during this time, you'll want some doctor that you're comfortable with to be in your 'court' and if you have to start changing everything.....that's not going to help you in the long run.
Dx 6/22/2006 IIA rectal cancer
6 wks rad/Xeloda -finished 9/06
1st attempt transanal excision 11/06
11/17/06 XELOX 1 cycle
5 months Xeloda only Dec '06 - April '07
10+ blood clots, 1 DVT 1/07
transanal excision 4/20/07 path-NO CANCER CELLS!
NED now and forever!
Perform random acts of kindness

Pyro
Posts: 289
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 7:40 pm
Location: Tucson, AZ

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby Pyro » Mon Jun 03, 2019 11:06 am

This could have gotten political really quick, I thought about doing it but thankfully I didn’t. As far as money goes, what about a life insurance living benefit? Anyone approach their doctor about it? One of my policies require the doctor to sign that you have 9 months or so left, it’s something I want him to sign but I don’t want to know, advice?
Aug 2015- Stage 4 CC with liver Mets(38/m)
Sep 2015- Avastin/Folfox/Iron
Dec 2015-Not liver surgery candidate
Jan 2016- Erbitux/Folfiri, 2nd opinion at MDA in TX
Feb 2016 -MDA liver surgery
Mar 2016 -30% of left lobe rem, PVE
May 2016 - 70% of liver rem
Jun 2016-Rad
Jan 2017-perm colost @MDA
Jul 2017-Erb/FOLFURI
Nov 2017 -Lung & Liver ablations@MDA
Jan 2018 -Xeloda & Avastin mx
Jul 2018-Avast/FOLFURI
Sep 2018-Rad
Mar 2019 - Keytruda fail
Jun 2019 - FOLFURI
Aug 2019 - No more, quality time!

martd
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:48 pm
Location: Phoenix, Az

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby martd » Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:35 pm

Pyro wrote:This could have gotten political really quick, I thought about doing it but thankfully I didn’t. As far as money goes, what about a life insurance living benefit? Anyone approach their doctor about it? One of my policies require the doctor to sign that you have 9 months or so left, it’s something I want him to sign but I don’t want to know, advice?



I would do it, If he's willing to sign it and that's what you want go for it. In reality he may know it will be much longer but on paper if he has the ability to give that prognosis he might do it just to help you out. My policy has the same benefit, it also has a critical illness benefit, I've already pulled $25,000 from that. And hell, if he says no way your not even close that might be nice to hear.
49 y/o male dx 11/2017 crc
Stage 4 with 17 liver Mets, cea 490
RAS, BRAF WT Tp53 LOF
12 rounds folfox , avastin
5/18 cea 2.8 liver resection and pve
7/18 part 2 liver resection, remove right side of liver
Surgical site mrsa infection, wound vac
8/18 cea .9 cCR, rectal tumor is gone
Rectal surgery postponed, watch and wait
10/18 clear scan CEA .7
01/19 clear scan CEA .9
04/19 clear scan CEA .9
07/19 clear scan CEA 1.0

Pyro70
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2019 4:25 pm

Re: Laid off before Dx

Postby Pyro70 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:10 pm

martd wrote:
Pyro wrote:This could have gotten political really quick, I thought about doing it but thankfully I didn’t. As far as money goes, what about a life insurance living benefit? Anyone approach their doctor about it? One of my policies require the doctor to sign that you have 9 months or so left, it’s something I want him to sign but I don’t want to know, advice?



I would do it, If he's willing to sign it and that's what you want go for it. In reality he may know it will be much longer but on paper if he has the ability to give that prognosis he might do it just to help you out. My policy has the same benefit, it also has a critical illness benefit, I've already pulled $25,000 from that. And hell, if he says no way your not even close that might be nice to hear.


I agree. If he is willing to sign it, great. I’ve seen studies that oncologists prognoses are fairly poor anyways. There is just so much variability between patients.
Dx Jan 2017 stage IVB w/ PC age 35
FOLFOX
SEP 17 HIPEC 1, anastamosis leak
XELODA
MAR 18 HIPEC 2
JUN 18, ileo reversal and 2nd anastamosis leak


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