Patient Support

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Financial Assistance Resources

SCCA Family Assistance Fund

The SCCA Family Assistance Fund was established and is maintained through generous, ongoing donations from individuals and community groups desiring to help families during their cancer treatment in Seattle. Assistance is granted to those patients and families with critical financial needs brought about by their treatment. You may submit your application in advance of your arrival in order to be pre-qualified for financial assistance. If eligible, we can provide an estimate of the amount and type of assistance you may qualify for. The exact amount you will be awarded will be determined once your treatment begins at the SCCA. Please see eligibility requirements on the application (aplicación en español). 

National Organizations

Help with Expenses Related to Treatment

Here are some organizations whose services may be helpful for those who need assistance with expenses relating to their cancer treatment.

CancerCare is a national nonprofit agency that offers free support, information, financial assistance and practical help to people with cancer and their loved ones. Financial assistance is given in the form of limited grants for certain treatment expenses.

  • Breast cancer: CancerCare has partnered with the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation to create the Linking A.R.M.S. program, which provides limited financial assistance for hormonal and oral chemotherapy, pain and antinausea medication, lymphedema supplies and durable medical equipment for women with breast cancer.
  • Cervical or breast cancer: CancerCare also operates the AVONCares Program for Medically Underserved Women, in partnership with the Avon Foundation. This program provides financial assistance to low-income, underinsured or uninsured, underserved women throughout the country who need supportive services (such as transportation, childcare and home care) related to the treatment of breast and cervical cancers. For information, call (800) 813-HOPE (4673).

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) offers information and financial aid to patients in significant financial need who have leukemia, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Hodgkin’s lymphoma or multiple myeloma. The LLS Patient Financial Aid web page provides more information about the types of service available, application forms and eligibility requirements. For information, call (800) 955-4572.

NeedyMeds is a nonprofit organization with the mission of helping people who cannot afford medicine or healthcare costs. The information at NeedyMeds can be obtained anonymously and is free. NeedyMeds is an information source similar to the Yellow Pages; it does not supply medications or financial assistance but helps people find assistance programs and other available resources.

The Patient Advocate Foundation Co-Pay Relief Program provides limited payment assistance for medicine to insured patients who financially and medically qualify. Get more information about the program online, or call (866) 512-3861.

Help with Medication Expenses

Patient-assistance programs are offered by some pharmaceutical manufacturers to help pay for medications. To learn whether a specific drug might be available at reduced cost through such a program, talk with a physician or a medical social worker or visit the drug manufacturer’s Web site. Most pharmaceutical companies have a section titled “patient-assistance programs” on their Web site.

Medically Indigent Drug Assistance Information Booklet, from the American Cancer Society, lists companies that provide assistance and the drugs available as well as their procedures for providing the drugs. Booklet available free to healthcare providers. Call the American Cancer Society at (800) ACS-2345 (227-2345).

Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturing Association Directory provides financial assistance for medicines. Call (800) PMA-INFO (762-4636).

The Partnership for Prescription Assistance has information about more than 475 public and private patient-assistance programs. Call (888) 4PPA-NOW (477-2669).

Other Resources That May Help Financially

The American Cancer Society provides free wigs, head coverings, financial referrals and resources to patients in need. Call (800) ACS-2345 (227-2345) or your local chapter.

The Patient Advocate Foundation provides education, legal counseling and referrals for cancer patients and survivors concerning managed care, insurance, financial issues, job discrimination and debt-crisis matters. Call (800) 532-5274.

Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation (CCCF) is a nonprofit organization that provides information, peer support and advocacy through publications, an information clearinghouse and a network of local support groups. CCCF maintains a list of organizations to which eligible families can apply for financial assistance. Call (800) 366-CCCF (2223).

Ronald McDonald House, supported by Ronald McDonald House Charities, provides a “home away from home” for families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at nearby hospitals. Ronald McDonald Houses are temporary residences near the medical facility, where family members can sleep, eat, relax and find support from other families in similar situations. In return, families are asked to make a donation ranging on average from $5 to $20 per day, but if that isn’t possible, their stay is free. Call (630) 623-7048.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can provide information about tax deductions for medical costs that are not covered by insurance policies. For example, tax-deductible expenses might include mileage for trips to and from medical appointments, out-of-pocket costs for treatment, prescription drugs or equipment, and the cost of meals during lengthy medical visits. The local IRS office, tax consultants, or certified public accountants can determine whether medical costs are tax deductible. Call (800) 829-1040.

Community voluntary agencies and service organizations, such as United Way of America, Salvation Army, Lutheran Social Services, Jewish Social Services, and Catholic Charities, may offer help. These organizations are listed in your local telephone directory. Some churches and synagogues may provide financial help or services to their members.

State and local social-services agencies can provide help with food, housing, prescription drugs, transportation and other medical expenses for those who are not eligible for other programs. Information can be obtained by contacting your state or local agency, listed in your local telephone directory.

International Resources

The National Cancer Institute is the principal cancer research organization in the United States and has limited information about financial resources for people living outside this country. Call (800) 4-CANCER (422-6237).

The International Cancer Information Service Group (ICISG) is an independent international organization composed of cancer information services. Its mission is to provide high-quality cancer information services and resources to those concerned about, or affected by, cancer throughout the world. Cancer-information services are available in many countries to provide information and answer questions about cancer. They may also be able to help locate financial assistance close to where you live. A list of these cancer information services is available on the ICISG Web site or may be requested by writing to the Nation Cancer Institute Public Inquiries Office, Cancer Information Service, Room 3036A, 6116 Executive Boulevard, MSC 8322, Bethesda, MD 20892-8322, USA.

The International Union Against Cancer (UICC) is another resource for people living outside the United States. The UICC consists of international cancer-related organizations devoted to the worldwide fight against cancer. UICC membership includes research facilities and treatment centers and, in some countries, ministries of health. Other members include volunteer cancer leagues, associations and societies. These organizations serve as resources for the public and may have helpful information about a variety of topics, including financial assistance.

To find a resource in or near your country, you can search the UICC’s membership directory, call + 41 22 809 18 11, or contact the UICC at:
International Union Against Cancer (UICC)
62 Route de Frontenex
1207 Geneva
Switzerland