How much does cancer cost?

Thursday 6 February, 2020

Cancer patient and nurse

Help us find out. Join our focus group 

Regardless of where people are treated, cancer treatment can be expensive. People may have to pay for medications, scans, tests, and appointments with doctors.

Danielle Spence, Head of Strategy and Support, Cancer Council Victoria said costs varied and could cause financial hardship.

“These extra costs are often unexpected and can seriously impact families, particularly if the primary caregiver has to take time off work for treatment, or to look after their loved one,” she said.  

“When you’re diagnosed with cancer, you don’t know how much it’s going to cost you – and often no one tells you.

“At a time when people should be focused on their recovery, extra, and often unavoidable costs, can become a real source of stress and worry.”

Cancer Council Victoria is working to develop a strategy to inform patients about any costs associated with their cancer care before they start their treatment so people can make informed decisions.

“We want to gain a better understanding of the costs people incur in the public and private health system, the information they receive about these costs and what needs to be done to improve the system for patients,” Ms Spence said.

What's being done

Cancer Council Victoria is working with Deakin University to conduct a series of focus group discussions with people diagnosed with cancer in Victoria and their carers to learn more about their experiences in being informed about the costs of cancer care and the impact it has during and post treatment.   

The research will contribute to Cancer Council’s work to develop a strategy to inform patients about any costs associated with their cancer treatment before they start their treatment so they can make informed decisions regarding treatment pathways. 

Join our focus group

Be part of a focus group and share your experiences to help improve financial outcomes for people with cancer.

Learn more


Talking bubbles icon

Questions about cancer?

Call or email our experienced cancer nurses for information and support.

Contact a cancer nurse