When You Are Diagnosed with Cancer

When you are diagnosed with cancer there’s plenty of help there, you just have to find it.  Check out the following Reuter’s blog post by Debra Sherman.


Some important resources highlighted in the article include:


Some medical centers have dedicated housing for their traveling cancer patients and families. These enable patients to spend time with others who are battling cancer, while offering a significant financial savings, she says.

For example, Johns Hopkins (Baltimore, MD) has a nearby lodging residence, the Hackerman-Patz Patient & Family Pavilion; and MD Anderson (Houston, TX) owns the Jesse H. Jones Rotary House, a full-service hotel operated by Marriott.  If you travel to New York city for treatment, Miracle House operates five 3-bedroom apartments located in midtown Manhattan for patients and caregivers.

Other centers will have made arrangements with nearby hotels to offer a “medical rate,” which is usually lower than the hotel’s “standard rate”, says Stoller.  If you stay at a hotel, make sure you ask if they offer a “medical rate.”

Stoller has listed several free or reduced rate housing options for cancer patients on CancerHawk.

Dearell Niemeyer, Managing Director, Mission Delivery Initiatives at American Cancer Society (ACS), says its Hope Lodge is free for cancer patients. There are 31 lodges, according to its website.

Air and ground travel:

ACS has several programs aimed at reducing travel costs to cancer patients. They include the Road to Recovery program, where a volunteer may take a patient to treatment at no cost. It also has voucher programs for discounts on cabs or other transportation.

The ACS’s air miles program uses donated frequent flyer miles. It can have small administrative fees, but  greatly reduces air fares. The program availability is limited to the amount of donated miles on hand.

For air travel, Stoller lists on CancerHawk  more than a dozen organizations that offer free travel.


For help with treatment costs, you might consider joining a clinical trial, which are free to the patient in most cases, says Beth Foster, a breast cancer survivor and cancer coach.

Click here to find the National Cancer Institutes’s 10-step guide to finding a cancer treatment trial.

Foster notes that many top hospitals offer financial assistance, but you need to ask to find out.

Websites that help set up an account for anyone who needs help with medical bills include https://www.medgift.com and http://www.giveforward.com/s/learn/



Cancer.net has put together a comprehensive list of organizations that offer help, including grants for medical costs, travel and housing.

Another great resource is the Dragon Master Foundation (DMF) which is a not for profit organization staffed by volunteers that maintains a list of resources for those diagnosed with cancer.  Check it out at  http://www.dragonmasterfoundation.org/resources.

The Dragon Master Foundation is working to:


​Develop a large-scale database that will transcend existing consortiums and databases and will house molecular, genetic, clinical and environmental data. Further, the database will be built for high-volume, high-velocity data processing taking advantage of the latest technologies while allowing for future growth and advancements. The initial primary focus will be brain tumors, starting with data collection in the pediatric population and then expanding into adults. Update: We are partnered with the Children’s Brain Tumor Tissue Consortium on the Cavatica platform


Reward qualified researchers and institutions who share data with the database by giving them free access to the database, leveraging existing grant funding, and creating new grants through fundraising efforts. Update: Access to Cavatica is free. We are currently advocating for other foundations to consider data sharing in their funding models, and we are involved in developing a data sharing award.


Provide opportunities for researchers to work with each other and with other experts outside of their field of expertise to expand the horizons of research by pushing their experiences outside the box. Update: Cavatica has a shared space for collaboration. Additionally, we have an outreach effort to encourage more academic use of the platform.


Provide a system for tracking patients from one clinical study and/or hospital to the next and give researchers better long-term data on deaths and survivors.

MedGift recognizes the needs of those undergoing a medical or health related crisis are complex.  These needs may include emotional support from friends and loved ones, ability to keep everyone in your support community apprised of your progress, you may may need financial assistance for non-covered expenses, you may need specific items such as a wheel chair, hospital bed etc and/or you may need help with routine activities such as meals, house work, transportation etc.  MedGift support pages address each of these needs in a simple, fast and easy to use manner.   MedGift, the vision of Diem Brown, is a totally free, not for profit that is refreshingly different.  Check us out MedGift at www.medgift.com.

Struggling to afford all the support and care you or a loved one in need?

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