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Am Soc Clin Oncol Educ Book. 2018 May 23;(38):524-531. doi: 10.1200/EDBK_201051.

Communicating the Financial Burden of Treatment With Patients.

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From the Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA; CancerCare, New York, NY; Divisions of Unintentional Injury Prevention and Cancer Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA.


In recent years, high health care costs and the financial burden of cancer care have received increased attention. In response to the financial burden of cancer care, patients may jeopardize their health outcomes by not properly adhering to prescribed therapies or even forgoing and delaying care in an effort to defray costs. In addition, the financial burden experienced by patients with cancer may negatively impact clinical outcomes, such as quality of life, physical and psychological symptoms, and potentially, even survival. Notably, in the current era of targeted treatment and immunotherapies for patients with cancer, the rising costs of cancer continue to remain at the forefront of patient concerns. Therefore, a critical need exists to determine how best to assist patients with the cost burden of cancer diagnosis and treatment.

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