Managing bills and other financial burdens at the same time as coping with a cancer diagnosis and related treatment can be stressful.Creating an organizational system before treatment begins can help to ensure that you make all payments on time and do not incur any late fees. It is also important to keep all of your medical records, insurance information, and treatment resources organized and readily available.
What can you do?
- Create a filing system using a file cabinet or accordion-style divider folder to keep bills, medical records, and other important paperwork. To receive a personal health manager folder go to the American Cancer Society's website.
- Enlist a family member, close friend, or loved one to help you manage the bills and paperwork for times when you may not have the energy to do this yourself
- Prioritize bills in order of importance
- Talk with creditors about negotiating for smaller monthly payments if you are not able to pay the full amount owed on bills. Many creditors would prefer you make some payment rather than none at all and are willing to negotiate a payment plan.
- Talk with your oncology social worker who may be able to help you organize and manage your financial issues as well as recommend and/or connect you with resources to help with financial aid.
MaineHealth also offers financial counselors to help you figure out healthcare costs and find options for payment assistance. Learn more about this service here.
If you would like more information on this topic or others, reach out to one of our health educators for help.