For those diagnosed with cancer who are experiencing financial woes, here are some ways to help yourself. 

First things first: Do your research. Plenty of resources are available for people with cancer, including the Cancer Financial Assistance Coalition and If you need help getting started, ask your doctor, local health department or a social worker for information. 

Financial navigators are counselors who can help patients understand out-of-pocket expenses, which services health insurance plans might cover and how to set up payment plans—as well as find cost-saving treatment methods and better access to health care. 

Next, gather the necessary paperwork, such as proof of your diagnosis, as well as paycheck stubs, tax filings and any other proof of income. This supporting documentation will come in handy when you apply for a grant, food stamps or disability benefits. In addition, consider reaching out to pharmaceutical companies that offer patient assistance programs for folks who can’t afford to pay for their medicines. 

A diagnosis doesn’t have to shatter your whole world. Reach out to others, and tap into resources and services to help ease your burden. Doing so can do wonders for your wellness and recovery.