What Benefits Are Cancer Patients Entitled To?

Submitted by Eric on

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There are different kinds of benefits for cancer patients. Among those different benefits are Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicare, Medicaid, and non-profit assistance.

All these benefits can be helpful to an individual who is unable to work and earn a living because of cancer. Here is a closer look at the different benefits and how they can help you cover your living expenses and medical care.

Medicare and Medicaid

Medicare and Medicaid can help cancer patients. These are medical insurance plans that help cover the cost of cancer treatment and any other needed medical care.

If your disability claim is approved, you can get Medicare coverage after a set time. You will pay a nominal fee for your monthly coverage unless you meet specific financial criteria, and your premiums are covered. Medicaid is a government insurance program that offers free medical coverage to individuals who meet the financial requirements.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)

The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program provides funds to the states and territories for families in need of financial assistance and other support services. To be eligible for TANF the applicant must be a resident of the state where they apply and also a U.S. citizen, legal alien or qualified alien. You have to be unemployed or underemployed and be in receipt of a low or very low income. In addition you should be one of the following:

  • Have a child 18 years of age or younger,
  • Be pregnant,
  • Be 18 years of age or younger and the head of your household.

Food Stamps/SNAP

Income and assets are used to assess eligibility for food stamps under the federal government’s SNAP program. Larger families and poorer families have a higher limit under the program.

Non-Profit Assistance

There are different non-profit agencies that can help individuals who have cancer. Of course, there may be agencies that just serve a specific area, there are some that serve a wider audience.

There are non-profit organizations that help cover medical costs, such as prescription copays, copays for doctor visits, and deductibles. Each program has its own eligibility requirements and may only cover specific kinds of cancer.

Some of those agencies include CancerCare Co-Payment Assistance Foundation, HealthWell Foundation, and the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD).


There are federal disability benefits available for cancer patients. To qualify for disability benefits, either Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you must either have enough work credits for SSDI or meet the financial criteria for SSI.

You must also meet the criteria of the Blue Book listing. The Blue Book is the list of conditions that qualify for disability. You must meet the specific criteria required to be approved for disability benefits per that specific listing. Depending on the kind or severity of the cancer, your disability claim may be automatically approved.

You must provide hard medical evidence that confirms the diagnosis, shows your treatment plan, and shows the severity of your condition and how it affects your daily life and your ability to work and earn a living.

Without supporting evidence and documentation, your claim will not be approved, and you will not receive disability benefits. You will need to gather all your medical records that show your cancer diagnosis and your treatment plan.

Get Help Applying For Benefits

A lawyer may be able to help you apply for benefits because of your cancer. There are government benefits for cancer patients, and these benefits can be very helpful in your financial situation.

Disability claims can be challenging, and a disability lawyer can help you maneuver the claims process and gather the supporting evidence that your claim needs to succeed.

Considering applying for Social Security disability benefits but not sure how much you’ll earn per month? Our Social Security Disability Calculator can help you determine how much you’ll receive from the SSA before you file for disability.

Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form to share the details of your disability claim with an attorney who represents cancer patients in your area with their disability claims.

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