Will My Insurance Pay for Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplants?

Question: Will my insurance company pay for a bone marrow or stem cell transplant for breast cancer?

Answer: It is difficult if not impossible for an individual patient to answer this question. Furthermore, describing the nature of the treatment to an insurance company is difficult for the patients and difficult for doctors because oftentimes the full nature of the treatment is not understood before detailed consultation should take place.

If a bone marrow transplant is to be considered the first step, again, is to be referred to a research center where this procedure is done. All good research centers have personnel who can discuss with your insurer whether or not this technique is reimbursed. Oftentimes there will be questions regarding this and it's necessary for that dialogue to take place between the doctors themselves and the insurance company prior to this final decision being made. The key advice is, as an individual patient, don't attempt to determine this answer. Be referred to a transplant center and if transplant is an appropriate procedure for you let their personnel help you determine this. Absolutely, however, do not commit to a transplant until you have in writing a firm answer from your insurance company.

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