by Lou Ann Donovan
The World Health Organization (WHO) published a revised document in 2008 listing MPNs as a blood cancer to promote the recognition of the genetic characterization of myeloid malignancies. Now, there are numerous organizations providing financial support and assistance with travel to a cancer center, copay and medication assistance, and many programs for patients with an MPN blood cancer.
For the newly diagnosed, one of the first recommendations is to see an MPN Specialist. Financial burden can make this a difficult task. Even with healthcare insurance, the deductibles and copays can make this task financially overwhelming. Here’s a “doctor reviewed” and frequently updated list of MPN Specialists in the United States to find a specialist close to you.
Support Programs at Cancer Centers
MPN Specialists at the Cancer Centers are experts who look beyond your blood cancer to provide care for the whole you through a diverse range of free services, including: one-on-one personal counseling, nutrition, patient education, social work, support groups and integrative health using yoga and meditation to help cancer patients feel better by reducing fatigue, nausea, pain and anxiety.
Cancer Survivorship Clinics provide services that help cancer survivors live well and help manage physical and emotional changes you may experience after your cancer treatment.
Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS)
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has a wealth of information, resources and support available to blood cancer patients and their caregivers. Speak one-on-one with an Information Specialist who can assist you through financial and social challenges, co-pay assistance, patient travel assistance, telephone/web patient programs and booklets, nutritional consultations, support groups and more. For a complete list of covered expenses, available funding, and a list of other helpful organizations visit their website.
Patient Assistance Programs
Before you begin treatment, patients and caregivers should meet with an Oncology Nurse Navigator who helps provide support services, coordinates elements of care and helps you learn about additional cancer resources. See below for a partial listing of patient assistance programs for MPNs. For a list of other helpful organizations, go to Resources on the MPN Cancer Connection website.
Copay and Medication Assistance
Good Days works directly with pharmacies and doctors to pay for patients’ out-of-pocket expenses for medicines, including Pegasys and Jakafi.
IncyteCares provides support and copay assistance for eligible patients taking the Incyte medication Jakafi.
Patient Access Network Foundation (PAN) offers help to underinsured people with life-threatening, chronic and rare diseases get the medications and treatments they need by assisting with their out-of-pocket costs and advocating for improved access and affordability.
HealthWell Foundation provides financial assistance to eligible individuals to cover coinsurance, copayments, health care premiums and deductibles for certain medications and therapies.
NeedyMeds is a nationwide non-profit organization that has free information on medication and healthcare costs savings programs including prescription assistance programs and medical and dental clinics.
Patient Advocate Foundation provides financial assistance to qualified patients assisting them with prescription drug co-payments their insurance requires relative to their diagnosis as well as arbitration, mediation, and negotiation services.
Travel and Airfare Assistance
Air Care Alliance (ACA) provides a listing of nonprofit organizations nationwide that fly patients to treatments at no charge.
Angel Flight Central (AFC) is a volunteer non-profit organization whose mission is to “Serve people in need by arranging charitable flights for health care or other humanitarian purposes” throughout the Central U.S,
Mercy Medical Angels is ready to help patients in financial need and your caregiver with transportation on the ground and in the air to life changing, life-saving medical care.
Key Takeaway: As a cancer patient with MPN, there are plenty of programs available to help ease your financial burden. Be sure to reach out to a financial navigator at your cancer center for additional assistance.