Intended for healthcare professionals


US cancer patients have problems with insurance and care, says survey

BMJ 2006; 333 doi: (Published 30 November 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;333:1138
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. 1New York

Patients with cancer in the United States are poorly served by their health insurance companies and healthcare systems and often suffer financially, says a national survey by the newspaper USA Today, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the Harvard School of Public Health.

Half of US cancer patients and their families had problems with coordination of care. Most patients were treated well by their employers, but 25% of families (including both the insured and the uninsured) said that the person with the disease used up most or all of their savings and some money borrowed from relatives.

Having health insurance during treatment limited the financial consequences, but, even so, …

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