Following Shannen Doherty's breast cancer journey opened my eyes yet again to a unique characteristic of cancer and the increase in greed driven cancer treatment providers. Regardless of economic or social status cancer can become a part of and an unwelcome force in anybody's life. Like many of you Shannen is brave but scared at the same time. I think it took a lot of courage to post this picture on instagram. Shannen has reached the point in life where you discover whats really important.
Many would assume that an actress would have a better chance at beating cancer than the average person because the more money the better care one can purchase, right? Not necessarily. Some medical professionals are speaking out about the out-of-control cost of cancer medications and the fact that some are being marketed as though they are better than those they replace. It seems that in many cases not only are they not better, they are less effective yet more expensive.
It seems that Shannen lost precious treatment time due to her accounting firm failing to pay insurance premiums during 2014 preceding the onset of breast cancer in 2015. She thinks her life was shortened because she could not access medical treatment for her breast cancer. Shannen is sueing the accounting firm but she cannot reverse the hands of time to make up for treatment she missed out on. It appears that Shannen could not afford to pay for cancer treatment out of her own pocket either.
Forty-two million people were uninsured in the United States in 2013, the year before the implementation of President Obama's health care law, according to an annual report from the Census Bureau.
The number represented 13.4 percent of the population. At the least these numbers strongly suggest that scores of people diagnosed and undiagnosed with cancer probably went untreated. No, more likely than not the average cancer patient or sufferer is not or was not paying for treatment out of his or her own pocket considering the average cost of cancer medication.
Each year, cancer costs the world more money than any other disease, according to the American Institute of
Cancer Research (AICR).
Cancer costs $895 billion annually. Comparatively, heart disease costs $753 billion. Nothing else comes close, with traffic accidents and diabetes each costing about $204 billion. https://www.drugwatch.com/2015/10/07/cost-of-cancer/
My late mom talked about the high cost of cancer drugs often. I cannot help but think "if she thought the cost was astronomical in 2007, she would be in shocked about costs today." I pray that something will happen that will force "Big pharma" to put people's health and welfare ahead of profit but I am not optimistic.
This was my first post on "Blog for Cure" 2010.
This page is dedicated to my late mother who lost a vicious battle to breast cancer. Mom left us too soon, December 2007 to be exact. She loved life and her family, but we could tell that she was ready to go. In fact, while at home with my youngest sister in California, "on her last night at home" she said to my sister, ( I thinks it's time)! And my sister said to us, (mom's other two daughters), " I think you all need to come now!" Silly me, thought I'd rush there to the hospital and sit and talk with mom.... But to my surprise, mom was not even aware that I was there. She was tubed up, in intensive care and she felt cool to the touch.
But mom's eye balls were moving, underneath her eyelid. "Surely I thought; she must hear me." I gently rubbed her head and softly spoke to her, telling her that I was there and trying to fight back tears. I held her hand and she looked so different, "as if she had already transitioned without our permission" even before I could say goodbye! Soon there was nothing to do, but go home and prepare to come back the next day, so that we could have the talk that I longed to have with her. I don't really know what I wanted to talk about, I just felt compelled to have a conversation with her. I needed to hear her voice, see her eyes and see her smile. Now this was all going down on a Friday night. I had flown in from Atlanta and my oldest sister had arrived earlier after flying in from Chicago. Again that was on a Friday night, about midnight to be exact. Since mom was in intensive care we were able to head straight to the hospital and see her that night.
My sister youngest sister who lives in California had cared for mom since she became ill. She is actually the youngest sister, but it seems that she too is my big sister. I hate that I was so far away when mom took sick. I wish that I could have helped my sister more. All of these things were going through my head and I only had one night for them to pass through because by Saturday night (the next night) mom had passed away. Well mom and all her three daughters were very close, this includes me. Before mom passed away, she used to tell me that they called her the miracle lady at the hospital where she was treated for her cancer. This was because mom had been given approximately five years to live, but was still here eleven years later.
She always said that doctor's don't always know when God will be calling you home. Mom kept her suffering to herself and she never revealed what stage of cancer her body was in. Yet there were things she said that were laced with clues, and I'm sad to say that I missed many of them. Even though it's been two years I still hurt deep down inside. I still wonder if she could hear me, when I stood over her bed and gently stroked her head and whispered words of love and hope...I just want to know if she knew I was there? I didn't want to see her go, but it was hurting too much to see her stay.
To see a vibrant, strong and loving woman transition from a life filled with love to one that's riddled with pain and despair is not a pretty picture! Mom was always such a positive and passionate person. She never complained during her 12 year battle with breast cancer. Now don't get it confused, I'm not saying that mom didn't struggle, or go through bouts of pain, I'm just saying that she never complained, instead she found some good in the midst of her distress. Mom made her journey bearable for all of us and she knew exactly what she was doing, this still amazes me.' Just as most mothers are; mom was protective of our sense of vulnerability. She knew that we wouldn't do well knowing that she was suffering emotionally and physically. But she was, because I remembered times when she would just sit in the dining room chair and stare out of the window, as if she had a million things on her mind..Often she'd be bouncing her leg and slightly rubbing her hands together, as she hummed a song.
Two years later I find myself wondering about what she may have been thinking about! But it's too late..I can't ask her now and I didn't ask her then! Over the last two or three years prior t her passing, she had mentioned several times; that if it was her tome to go back then, she was ready! She started telling us things like, ( we needed to get out of debt and don't keep reaching for things), because you just didn't need all of that to be content in life. Mom said that she didn't mind going if it was her time, because this world had really gotten really rough and would only continue to get worse, because people had lost their way and no longer knew what was important in life. Mom's been right about all of those things, but I just wonder what made her tell us those things at that time in her life?
Mom had to know her time was near and knowing that made her want to leave us with something more valuable than money. She seemed to unceasingly keep feeding us wisdom and she did it as though she was passing it down for us to pass it on to our children. For 15 years mom laughed, cried, loved and encouraged those who shared diagnosis of breast cancer, a destiny no one looks forward to traveling. I guess I never really got it,until the very end and because of that I still cry inside.'
You see I never thought that breast cancer commanded such supremacy...but it does and still there's no cure! And now I'm feeling a little guilty, because I failed to mention that dad passed away 6 months after mom. He had prostate cancer. We loved dad dearly too, I just couldn't get through a post about each of them, at the same time...But, not mentioning dad makes it seem as if he wasn't as important mom and that's not the case! So there I did it! And I guess I'll have to add a photo of dad too... Well it's 3:48am and I can't get dad's photo to upload...Guess I'll have to do without tonite.