After a diagnosis of ovarian cancer, there may be a number of practical things to think about. These may include the cost of treatment and support, travel and accommodation costs, or childcare.
Concern about practical issues can affect how a woman feels, especially if it interrupts her daily activities. Some women worry about who will look after the children or another family member while they are in hospital, or how they will cope financially if they are unable to work. Sometimes women feel guilty about the impact of their cancer and its treatment on the family.
Cost of treatments
The cost will depend upon whether you are treated in the public or private system; are working and have to take time off; live in a rural area and need to travel for treatment; and have private health insurance.
A social worker or welfare worker can give you information about what financial and practical support services are available (your nurse or another member of your healthcare team can tell you how to access a social worker or welfare worker).
Talk to your local Medicare office about the 'safety net' on costs of medications and medical bills
Government-assisted travel schemes
Women who need to have treatment in a hospital far away from home may be able to get help with the cost of accommodation and travel. Each state and territory has a government-funded scheme to help patients who have to travel long distances to obtain specialist treatment that is not available locally.
The names for these schemes vary but may include:
- Patient-Assisted Travel Scheme (PATS) - (WA)
- Transport for Health - Isolated Patient Transport and Accommodation Assistance Scheme (IPTAAS) - (NSW)
- Interstate Patients Transport and Accommodation Service (IPTAS) - (ACT)
Depending on a woman's individual situation and where she lives, assistance with childcare, meals and general home help may also be available. Some women may be eligible for a sickness allowance while having treatment.
Sources of information about financial and practical help include:
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Last reviewed: December 2017