Cancer affects over 100,000 new Australians each year. However, for thirty-six per cent of new cancer patients who are diagnosed will be Australians who are living in regional, rural and remote areas.
The Study To Examine Financial Burden
According to a research study entitled ‘Fuel, beds, meals and meds: out-of-pocket expenses for patients with cancer in rural Queensland’, there are a large number of cancer patients in rural Queensland who are struggling to cover costs as high as $8000.
As a result of living in a rural or remote location in Queensland, cancer patients from rural Queensland are made to travel long distances in order to access medical services. This can impact the individual and their family by disrupting everyday life but also through personal financial hardship.
This particular study examined the financial cost on average for receiving treatment which rural Queensland residents have experienced. The study worked with a large number of patients receiving treatment at the Townsville Hospital Cancer Centre. 439 Australians participated in this study and shared insight to the direct out-of-pocket expenses relating to travel, accommodation and other expenses due to cancer.
What Is The Average Cost For Rural Queensland Cancer Patients?
Between an average of 16 months from when an individual is diagnosed up until the completion of treatment, would cost from $4311 to $6231. Some even experienced costs of $7752.00 in total when living more than 100km away from the Townsville Hospital Cancer Centre.
Although the cost varies depending on the family situation and location of the individual, it is clear from this study that a large number of Australians and their families who are located in rural Queensland do have high expenses to cover as a result of cancer.