Q. I was currently diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer and carry the BRCA1 gene. I was wondering if you offer any assistance in travel, lodging and wig fees?

A.

CancerCare offers some limited financial assistance that may be able to help with costs associated with transportation, child care, home care, or lymphedema garment costs. To determine if you are eligible and receive an application, please contact our Hopeline at 800-813-4673. Here are some additional sources of general financial assistance:

  • Triple Step Towards The Cure: 424-258-0313
  • The Pink Fund: 877-234-7465
  • Breast Cancer Charities: 936-231-8460

If you are seeking assistance with lodging during treatment, there are some organizations that focus on providing reduced or free lodging when staying out of your area for treatment. You may want to contact American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge program (800-227-2345), Joe’s House (877-563-7468), or the National Association of Hospitality Houses (800-542-9370).

If your treatment involves air travel, it may be helpful to contact Air Charity Network (877-621-7177), Lifeline Pilots (800-822-7972), or Corporate Angel Network (914-328-1313).

CancerCare provides wigs and breast prostheses free of charge to those in our New York City area. To request an appointment, please contact our Hopeline (800-863-4673). For those in other parts of the county, I recommend contacting your local branch of American Cancer Society as they may have a wig program. You can contact their hotline at 800-227-2345 or use the locator on their website. Also, if you haven’t already, you can ask at your treatment center if they have a wig program as many have wigs available to clients. Finally, you may be able to get wig costs covered or partially reimbursed through your medical insurance. It sometimes requires your doctor to write a prescription for a “cranial prosthesis.” If you have medical insurance, I would suggest contacting your insurance and inquiring if you have a wig benefit and how that process would work.

As you mentioned carrying the BRCA1 gene, I wanted to also note that the organization FORCE (Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered) provides services and supports to those impacted by and hereditary breast cancer.

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