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    Resources for Diagnosing & Treating Breast Cancer

    Sheila Seiler, Komen Evansville Tri-State, and Jennifer Small, Manager, Deaconess Breast Services 10/06/2018
    Too often, women are skipping their mammograms because they either think they can’t afford the mammogram, or are scared of the cost of treating breast cancer if diagnosed. We want to share some helpful information about how to get financial assistance for mammograms, diagnostic procedures and even treatment for breast cancer so you know what options are available for you and your loved ones.

    Note: This article is a shared perspective from both authors, each discussing their respective areas of professional expertise.
    Screening Mammogram
    If you don’t have insurance coverage for an annual screening mammogram (starting at age 40), you may qualify for one of several grants available at Deaconess.
    To begin, make your mammogram appointment at Deaconess Breast Services, either online or by calling 812-450-5250. At that time, let our staff know that you believe you won’t have insurance coverage (due to no insurance, or simply not having full coverage for the test). Our staff will ask you a few simple questions to determine which of our grants/programs will best fit you. Those programs consist of:
    • BCCP (Breast and Cervical Cancer Program) – a federal and state health care access program
    • Komen grant
    • Deaconess Hospital Foundation assistance
    • IBCAT (Indiana Breast Cancer Awareness Trust)
    If you financially qualify for one of these programs, we’ll make your mammogram appointment and walk you through any additional paperwork or process required.
    * There can be a cost difference between 2D and 3D mammography; however, because both Deaconess Breast Services and Komen recognize the value of 3D mammography, we find ways to cover this cost difference if women need assistance. 
    Abnormal Results from Mammogram (Diagnosis)
    If your mammogram shows abnormal results, there are resources available to help pay for further testing such as ultrasound, biopsy, and/or MRI.
    These include the same grants that cover mammograms:
    • BCCP (Breast and Cervical Cancer Program) – a federal and state health care access program
    • Komen grant
    • Deaconess Hospital Foundation
    • IBCAT (Indiana Breast Cancer Awareness Trust)
    To receive financial assistance from these programs, talk to the staff of the medical office when they give you your results. Just like with the screening mammogram, we will help schedule future appointments and walk you through any additional paperwork.
    Breast Cancer Treatment
    If someone is diagnosed with breast cancer, Komen funds the Tri-Cap Breast Cancer Program. It provides the following:
    • Organized patient navigator service
    • Case management
    • Education and information
    • Assistance with treatment costs
    This program is for both men and women who are diagnosed with breast cancer, and who qualify financially (due to not having insurance, or being unable to meet their deductible). To find out more, call Komen at 812-962-2202, or Tri-Cap at 812-428-2632, option 3.

    There are additional options for breast cancer treatment for those who need financial assistance. The BCCP (Breast and Cervical Cancer Program) helps women obtain care and services they need via this federal/state program. To qualify, you must complete a fairly simple application to determine if you meet the financial criteria; this application is available at all Deaconess Breast Services locations. 
    Also, both hospital systems in Evansville offer financial assistance for qualifying patients. Here at Deaconess, we have a simple process for applying for this type of aid. Visit the Financial Assistance page for full details, or contact our Patient Financial Services team at 812-450-6815 or toll free at 800-467-6802, 8 AM to 4:15 PM CST.

    Breast Cancer Navigators 
    At Deaconess Breast Services, we have breast cancer navigators who help women and their families through the cancer journey.

    Our navigators:
    • help patients understand their diagnosis and treatment process, manage side effects, etc.
    • guide patients through financial assistance
    • connect a woman to numerous social services, support groups and other community resources
    These navigators help make sure that care is coordinated so women can begin treatment as quickly as possible and get back to living their lives. This is a huge part of what our navigators do.
    Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Program
    One very special program offered at Deaconess is the Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Program, which allows women to meet with all their doctors and specialists, in one day at one appointment, to learn their best treatment plan and get their questions answered. This program reduces the time from diagnosis to starting treatment from an average of 22 days to 9 days or less. 
    Support Services
    Komen and Deaconess offer assistance in ways beyond treatment. We are knowledgeable about a variety of services including support groups in the region:
    • Gilda’s Club in Evansville offers a wide variety of support groups and programming for cancer patient AND those who love them.
    • There is a breast cancer peer support group that meets in Carmi, IL. Learn more by calling 618-273-3326 x2227.
    • Dream with Faith II Women’s Cancer Support Group, Zion Baptist Church, Henderson, KY meets the third Monday of the month.
    There are also some wonderful online support group options:  
    Cleaning for A Reason is a cleaning service available to cancer patients. If you know any woman currently undergoing chemo for any type of cancer, please pass the word to her that there is a cleaning service that provides FREE housecleaning – once a month for up to 2 times a month while she is in treatment. To sign up and get more details, visit Cleaning for a Reason will have a participating maid service in the patient’s zip code area (note: not available everywhere) to arrange for the service. If you would like more information, you can call their office at 812-402-3060 or visit their website.
    American Cancer Society
    Educational programs can be a huge help and comfort to cancer patients and their families. “Look Good, Feel Better” helps women with their hair, makeup and skin care… all via licensed cosmetologists.
    Reach to Recovery is a one-on-one support/mentoring program, and Road to Recovery provides transportation to-and-from appointments (depending on location).  If you have questions about these or other services, call ACS at 1-800-227-2345.
    Deaconess Cancer Services
    The staff at Deaconess Cancer Services have built a team of caring experts who help patients through every part of their cancer journey. That includes nurse navigators, dietitians, social workers and survivorship professionals. 
    We have fellowship-trained physicians with additional specialized training in the diagnosis and surgical treatment of breast cancer.
    Also, Deaconess Cancer Services provides survivorship care after treatment is complete. Once our patients have finished treatment (any combination of surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or endocrine therapy), they will be referred to see Claire Sutherby, an advanced practice nurse who specializes in survivorship. She helps patients learn what to expect in the coming weeks, months and even years following active treatment, and supports patients as they find their “new normal.” Side effect management, ongoing screenings, and referrals for nutrition education and cancer rehabilitation are also part of her expertise, and she can become an ongoing resource for patients who have questions and concerns between follow-up visits with their doctor. 

    In Summary
    The bottom line is that mammograms save lives, and there are resources available to help you at every stage – prevention through treatment. To all the women age 40 and older, if you haven’t had a screening mammogram in the past year, schedule online now or by calling 812-450-5250.
    To learn more about services offered through Komen, visit At the top, click “subscribe” to receive our weekly e-newsletter. 

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