10 Organizations That Can Help Pay Your Medical Bills

DEBT & CREDIT HELP - PAYING OFF DEBT
Take control of your medical debt with the assistance of these 10 organizations.
Updated May 8, 2024
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Medical bills can be an overwhelming expense when you’re already trying to pay off your debt or living paycheck to paycheck on a fixed income.

Fortunately, there are ways to have some or all of your medical bills covered depending on certain criteria. Check out these organizations that can help you pay your medical bills and lower your debt.

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The PAN Foundation

thanksforbuying/Adobe medical cost concept

The PAN Foundation focuses on helping patients with life-threatening, chronic, or rare diseases.

The foundation covers the cost of medication treatments that you may not be able to cover and advocates for improved health care access.

You can also apply for the foundation to cover transportation costs related to your medical treatment and your typical medical bills.

Medicare

zimmytws/Adobe medicare enrollment form

One of the best-known options is Medicare, which is medical insurance for seniors over 65.

The program has different parts, including Plan A for hospitals and nursing facilities, Plan B for doctors and outpatient care, and Plan D for prescription drugs.

It’s important to study the Medicare program to see what kind of coverage you can get for various medical services. For example, Medicare will pay for an ambulance to take you from the hospital to a skilled nursing facility.

You should learn about Medicare before planning for retirement. It can be confusing to navigate the plans, and you’ll want to be aware of all your options before you reach the eligibility age.

Supplemental Security Income

Vitalii Vodolazskyi/Adobe supplemental security income (ssi)

Supplemental Security Income is covered by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Social Security Administration, but you don’t have to be a Social Security recipient to qualify. There are no work-related qualifications for the program.

To qualify for aid, you need to meet specific criteria for the program, such as those with limited income who are blind, those over 65, and anyone with a qualifying disability.

You’ll have to apply through the Social Security Administration to see if you qualify for benefits.

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Your local hospital

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You may be surprised to find out that your local hospital has ways to help you with your medical bills.

Check with your hospital’s billing department or a patient advocate to see what options are available to help you get some or all of your medical bills covered.

Your local hospital may also be able to connect you with other local organizations that can help you with your needs, such as food or utility bills when you’re struggling financially.

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

9dreamstudio/Adobe medical treatmant billing statement

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) is dedicated to funding research, providing patient services, and developing education programs for patients suffering from blood cancers.

The society also has a financial assistance program for patients dealing with leukemia and lymphoma treatment.

The LLS has several different programs; you can check to see if one suits your needs. Programs include co-pay assistance, patient aid programs, and programs that cover non-medical needs like food or rent. 

You can also get money for dental issues your cancer treatments may have caused.

Children’s Health Insurance Program

Vitalii Vodolazskyi/Adobe childrens health insurance program

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) covers pediatric patients who may not qualify for Medicaid but still need some help with bills.

The program is administered through your state’s Medicaid program and can help with hospital care, medical services, and laboratory services.

Check with your state to see what coverage it can provide through its Medicaid program.

United Healthcare Children’s Foundation

cat027/Adobe stethoscope on medical billing statement

The United Healthcare Children’s Foundation awards grants to cover children’s needs during treatment and care.

There are some eligibility requirements, such as a family’s household income or medical insurance you may already have to cover your costs.

Check with the United Healthcare Children’s Foundation to see if you qualify for a grant, which may give you a maximum of $5,000 annually.

HealthWell Foundation

Christian Delbert/Adobe figuring the cost of healthcare

Even with health insurance, you may have expenses you can’t afford. The HealthWell Foundation may cover those gaps.

The foundation can cover prescription co-pays and health insurance premiums as well as costs related to transportation for treatment. It also has funds that cover specific illnesses such as leukemia, gout, or multiple myeloma.

Medicaid

Vitalii Vodolazskyi/Adobe medicaid eligibility

Like Medicare, Medicaid is a government-funded medical program for patients.

But while Medicare is for anyone over 65, Medicaid is specifically for people with low incomes who can’t afford medical coverage. There is no age limit for patients who can get Medicaid coverage, and you can get it for yourself or your family.

Medicaid is run through your state, so check with your state program to see how you can qualify and what kind of coverage you can receive.

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The RX Advocates

everythingpossible/Adobe doctor uses a calculator for medical costs

The RX Advocates help patients who can’t afford prescription medications to get some or all of their costs for a prescription covered. The program works with your doctor and you and the pharmaceutical companies to negotiate the price of specific medications.

There are some monthly fees depending on how many medications you have. It may be worth the effort so you don't get caught off-guard without money when you need your prescriptions refilled.

Bottom line

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Medical bills can be daunting, especially if they’ve piled up and you don’t know where to start. But if you can’t afford some of them, there are options to help you out.

Worrying about how you'll pay medical bills for yourself or a loved one doesn’t help your health. Contact one of these organizations to reduce your financial stress so you can focus on your health.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.

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