From cancer care to chronic pain, a severe illness comes with a wide range of stress, even beyond your symptoms or prognosis. From finding the best oncologist or pharmacy to considering different treatment options and prescription drugs, there’s always a new factor to consider–and, usually, a further expense that comes with it.
There’s no denying that those costs add up quickly, leading to even greater stress for many patients. Fortunately, some tools can make the costs of your treatment options and other health care more manageable, leaving you more mental energy to contend with your medical needs.
1. Do your research before committing.
Depending on your patient care plan, you’ll likely need at least one specialist throughout your treatment, if not multiple oncologists, surgeons, and other specialists. Even with quality medical insurance, the costs of seeing each medical professional have a significant impact on your budget. Before scheduling an appointment or otherwise committing to a specialist, take the time to research your health matters and their treatment needs.
Use a reliable internet resource to search for the “best oncologist near me” based on their patient reviews, experience in the field, and even their medical degree. Talk to other patients or ask your primary care physician for their insights before committing to a particular specialist, and you’ll have a better chance of finding the right fit up front. From there, you’ll be less likely to face excess expenses by having to switch providers over time.
2. Take preventive action.
Yes, you already have the medical condition in question. Even so, you can prevent further complications or other severe illnesses by taking the prescription medication your doctor recommends. A resource like canadadrugstore.com can help ensure you have the prescription medications you need and the pharmacist guidance to help you use them most effectively.
By treating your current symptoms and preventing future medical concerns, your go-to pharmacy is one tool that can help you avoid increasing medical costs as you manage the treatment of cancer, chronic pain, or another severe illness.
3. Use any available benefits.
You likely take advantage of your health insurance to help lower your medical costs or prescription coverage to manage your pharmacy expenses. You might not realize just how many other benefits are at your disposal. You might be able to use a prescription discount card or generic alternatives to lower the costs of any prescription medications.
Your oncologist might offer a payment plan or even a sliding scale rate to save you money on the treatment you need. Or, a clinical trial might offer compensation or lower treatment costs as a way to minimize or compensate for your expenses.
4. Negotiate when you need to.
Healthcare costs are ultimately unavoidable, but you just might be able to lower them. Whether or not you realize it, you may be able to negotiate lower prices on your requisite medical bills. Sometimes, it might be as simple as looking over your bill in search of errors.
Your insurance provider might be open to charging a lower rate, particularly if the current bill is higher than average. At the very least, you may be able to arrange a payment plan or work with a medical billing advocate to make your expenses more manageable, if not actually lower.
A serious illness comes with a wide variety of stress-inducing factors, including the ever-increasing pile of medical bills. Even still, you can lower your health care costs—and the pressure that comes with them—with the right tools and resources. From working with your pharmacist to researching the right specialist from day one, your medical needs can be met at a lower rate, whether that’s through negotiating rates or taking advantage of the benefits available to you.