Carol Marley wants everyone to know what a life-threatening cancer diagnosis looks like in America today. Yes, it’s the chemotherapy that leaves you weak and unable to walk across the room. Yes, it’s the litany of tests and treatments — the CT scans and MRIs and biopsies and endoscopies and surgeries and blood draws and radiation and doctor visits. Yes, it’s envisioning your funeral that torments you day and night. But none of these is her most gnawing, ever-present concern. That would be the convoluted medical bills that fill multiple binders, depleted savings accounts that destroy early retirement plans, and so, so many phone calls with insurers and medical providers. “I have faith in God that that my cancer is not going to kill me,” said Marley, who lives in Round Rock, Texas. “I have a harder time believing that this is gonna get straightened out and isn’t gonna harm us financially. That’s the leap of faith that I’m struggling with.” Coping with the financial fallout of cancer is exhausting. And nerve-wracking. But the worst part, Marley said, is that it’s unexpected. When she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last summer, she didn’t anticipate so many bills, or so many… Read full this story
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