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The Expenses of Cancer

It is overwhelming for one individual to endure the pain, sickness, and mental trauma that comes with fighting cancer, and then experience stress over the resulting expenses. In medicine, this scenario can create what the National Cancer Institute defines as financial toxicity – problems caused by the cost of medical care that can impact quality of life and access to medical care for cancer patients. Financial toxicity has even resulted in patients not getting treatment for cancer because of the costs involved.

With the variety of existing treatments, the question “how much does cancer treatment cost?” is difficult to answer. An article on explains that treatment can consist of one or a combination of the following:

  • Surgery
  • Radiation
  • Pharmacological therapy
  • Possible other cancer treatments (stem cell, hyperthermia, photodynamic and blood transfusions)

A 2019 report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics2 revealed that the average monthly costs for cancer treatments were:

  • $1,000 – $12,000 for chemotherapy
  • $9,000 for radiation
  • $10,000 – $12,500 for immunotherapy

Other indirect costs can include:

  • Transportation
  • Lodging
  • Lost wages or income
  • Caregiving and support
  • Possible rehabilitation
  • Possible increase or denial of health and/or life insurance

What Does Insurance Cover for Cancer?

While medical insurance is critical to covering many cancer costs, it typically DOES NOT cover all of the expenses associated with cancer treatment. For many patients, this discrepancy can result in substantial out-of-pocket expenses. Cancer fundraising is often a critical part of providing financial assistance to cancer patients.

Fundraising With Help Hope Live

At Help Hope Live, finding financial help for cancer patients begins by guiding individuals and their friends and family members on how to raise money for medical costs through community-based fundraising.

Our simple campaign request helps our team to determine whether fundraising is a viable option for you. If it is, we will work with you on a one-to-one basis to get your fundraising campaign up and running.

Does Fundraising Work?

Here are a few Help Hope Live fundraising success stories:

" The Longorias refuse to give up!!! It is now our time to help them get through these difficult times, once again.”

Late in 2020, mom of three, wife, and good friend Carmel Longoria received the difficult news that her cancer was out of remission. Unable to work and juggling continuous chemotherapy in addition to medical travel, Carmel and her family began fundraising with Help Hope Live. Within seven months, they had surpassed $12,800 raised. Carmel was able to receive multiple potentially life-changing transplants in 2021 to help her live a healthier life.

“We are so glad to report that he is still in remission.”

At 28 years old, Patrick “PJ” Kent experienced aches and pains that led to a shocking diagnosis: acute lymphocytic leukemia. Fundraising became a critical part of his family’s financial picture to assist with urgent needs ranging from specialized treatments to inpatient care and unexpected hospitalizations. In 2020, his family recognized the one-year anniversary of his diagnosis with new hope.


Pharmacological therapy
Cancer treatments

Ready to Get Started?

If you choose to fundraise with our nonprofit, here’s how the process will look:

1. APPLY for assistance

2. YOU’LL BE PAIRED with a Client Services Coordinator

3. YOUR COORDINATOR will provide you with one-on-one fundraising help, including personalized fundraising materials and guidance on how to rally your community, share your story on social media, reach out to the press, plan in-person or virtual fundraising events, and more.

Need Other Financial Help Options?

For alternatives to fundraising, you can find information on a variety of post-stroke financial assistance options. Please view our Catastrophic Illness Resource Directory for insight into sources of direct financial aid, support groups, and other resources for stroke patients and their families.