Testicular Cancer

Financial concerns

Most of the men interviewed here were well treated by their employers, and many remained on full pay while they were having their treatment. However, one manual worker felt that his manager had 'messed him around with his wages' while he was having chemotherapy, and another man didn't get paid while he was having treatment. Others had to retire from work for medical reasons (see 'Work').

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One man pointed out that even though he got full pay while ill there were various extra costs, which made life a 'little bit of a struggle'. He mentioned the cost of travel to and from hospital, and the cost of doing things with the kids while convalescing. Patients on low incomes can get help with the travel costs associated with NHS treatment by asking at the hospital for refund form HC5.

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Several men recommended having critical illness cover. One man, who had taken out critical illness insurance just before he became ill, recalled that in spite of this he still had financial difficulties due to his illness, and said that it was a hard time.

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Men who are self-employed may have more financial problems when they become ill than those who are employed by others. One man, who had only been self-employed for a month before he became ill, wished that he had taken out critical illness insurance before he developed cancer.

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Social services can sometimes help. One man, who was paid fully for six months, said that if he had had any financial concerns he could have talked to people from social services while he was in hospital.

Another man, who developed testicular cancer in 2001, had only just left a job. He said that he had been able to survive financially by reducing expenditure. His wife was working, and he had been able to claim state benefits. He pointed out that people from social services explain about benefits.

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Men's experience suggests that state benefits may not always cover expenses. One man, diagnosed in 2000, described his financial difficulties when he had to return to hospital for chemotherapy at the end of 2001.

One young man said that Macmillan Cancer Support had given him some money. He explained that the charity has grants for people who have financial difficulties.

After having had testicular cancer some men found it hard to obtain new insurance. For example, one man found it hard to get car insurance until he decided not to mention that he had had cancer on any of the application forms (although this might invalidate any claims he makes). Another man found it hard to get holiday insurance, but eventually, after searching, he found a company that would offer him cheap holiday insurance. Macmillan Cancer Support has a guide to travel insurance which lists companies that will insure people with cancer.

Life insurance premiums were affected too. Men complained that insurance brokers tend to classify them as 'high risk', simply because they had heard the word 'cancer'. One man thought that men cured of testicular cancer ought to be able to obtain insurance without an extra premium once three years had passed. He said that he had been told to go to the ombudsman if he were hit with an extra premium.

 

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For more information about state benefits contact GOV.UK or the Department for Work and Pensions. 

Last reviewed December 2014.
Last updated December 2014.

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