Helping People with Cancer
Why Pro Bono for Cancer?
Studies show that individuals with cancer often face “financial toxicity,” manifested by a mix of severe economic stress, depression and anxiety that can worsen the underlying health condition. Even with private health insurance or coverage through Medicare or Medicaid, families are at substantial risk of financial catastrophe. These families experience not only a major increase in daily expenses, but often a significant loss of income due to patients’ and their caregivers’ inability to maintain full-time work. We believe that financial planning can help.
Research shows that financial issues are the second most frequent source of distress identified by cancer patients.
37% cut back on groceries
36% deplete their savings
24% borrow against their retirements
86% of cancer survivors reporting serious financial burden had health insurance
Cancer patients are 2.65 times more likely to go bankrupt than people without cancer
Those experiencing bankruptcy are 80% more likely to die from any cause than others with cancer
How We Are Helping
FFP’s Pro Bono for Cancer Campaign is raising funds to help grow our support of pro bono efforts for families affected by a serious cancer diagnosis. Over the next several years, FFP will continue to award strategic grants focused on addressing the financial toxicity of cancer. Our goal is to test, refine and grow outstanding program models so that this work can be replicated and scaled, eventually helping thousands of families across the country.
Funding for our Cancer Program will help cover:
- Grants to great nonprofits administering pro bono financial planning programs for cancer patients.
- The recruitment of Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) professionals to provide their services, pro bono, to patients and their families, helping them plan for anticipated expenses, loss of income and more.
- A specialized online training program to educate volunteer financial planners on the unique financial and other challenges faced by cancer patients.
- Research and evaluation activities that will measure the impact of pro bono financial planning on the lives and financial health of families, enabling us and our partners to finetune programs for maximum effectiveness.
- Ongoing programmatic support of the various FFP-funded programs around the country.
FFP has offered early support to an important new initiative that in partnership with national nonprofit Family Reach and the Financial Planning Association (FPA®) will bring comprehensive financial supports and interventions—including pro bono financial planning—to at-risk families battling a serious cancer diagnosis. Piloting this year, the Financial Planning for Cancer program will offer important insights into the impact that pro bono financial planning can have on patients and their families. By year end, Family Reach seeks to expand its referral network to at least 15 hospitals across the country.
As part of the Financial Planning for Cancer program and with special support from FFP, CENTS will specially train CFP® professionals and connect them with cancer patients for individual financial consultations and planning. CENTS’ programs reach patients receiving treatment at hospitals in the Seattle area, including the Swedish Cancer Institute and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Through CENTS, patients and families can also access patient advocates who can help with health insurance and pharma assistance, and if needed, volunteer bankruptcy attorneys.