In­sur­ance

C.A.R.E. - - Cancer -

Many peo­ple living with can­cer feel over­whelmed with the pa­per­work and the com­plex rules about pay­ing for treat­ments. It’s a good idea tomake an ap­point­ment to talk with your med­i­cal team’s billing of­fice so you can get an­swers to th­ese ques­tions. It’s also a good idea to bring a trusted friend or fam­ily mem­ber with you so they can help note down the an­swers:

• Will my in­sur­ance cover my treat­ment?

• Does my health in­sur­ance com­pany need to ap­prove the treat­ment plan be­fore I begin treat­ment?

• Is the treat­ment fa­cil­ity you are rec­om­mend­ing in my in­sur­ance plan’s net­work?

• How­much will my out of pocket cost be?

• What if I can’t af­ford the out of pocket cost? Will I be turned down for treat­ment?

• Are my med­i­ca­tions on my health in­sur­ance plan’s pre­ferred drug list?

• What ismy pre­scrip­tion co-pay for each med­i­ca­tion?

• Will I be billed separately for lab­o­ra­tory tests, such as blood tests? Are they cov­ered un­der my health in­sur­ance?

• Do you of­fer any pay­ment plans?

Can­cer Ser­vices of New Mex­ico’s free Legal, In­sur­ance, & Pa­per­work As­sis­tance (LIPA) Pro­gram is the best place to get clear an­swers to th­ese ques­tions. It is the only ser­vice like it in the state, pro­vid­ing com­pre­hen­sive as­sis­tance with can­cer-re­lated legal, in­sur­ance, and pa­per­work is­sues.

The LIPA pro­gram has three ma­jor el­e­ments:

• LIPA Clin­ics— Free clin­ics are held the first and third Thurs­day of each month in Al­bu­querque. Vol­un­teers with ex­per­tise in in­sur­ance, med­i­cal cov­er­age, dis­abil­ity, legal, fi­nan­cial and pa­per­work is­sues are avail­able for per­sonal con­sul­ta­tions in per­son or by phone.

• LIPA Re­fer­ral Pro­gram — This pro­vides re­fer­rals to a va­ri­ety of other groups that as­sist can­cer pa­tients and their loved ones with LIPA-re­lated is­sues.

• LIPA Web­site (www.nm­cancer­help.org) — This pro­vides links to a wealth of re­sources to help with legal, in­sur­ance and fi­nan­cial is­sues.

The LIPA pro­gram is pro­vided at no cost to New Mex­ico can­cer pa­tients and sur­vivors and their fam­ily mem­bers and loved ones. For more in­for­ma­tion, go to www.nm­cancer­help.org or con­tact Stephanie Mich­novicz, Can­cer of New Mex­ico pro­gram manager, at 888-668-276

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