Nonmedical costs to patients and their families associated with outpatient chemotherapy

Peter S. Houts, Allan Lipton, Harold A. Harvey, Barbara Martin, Mary A. Simmonds, Richard H. Dixon, Santo Longo, Thomas Andrews, Robert A. Gordon, John Meloy, Salee L. Hoffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


One hundred thirty‐nine patients receiving outpatient chemotherapy kept diaries of nonmedical expenses resulting from their disease and its treatment. Diaries were kept for both treatment and nontreatment weeks. Results showed that the mean cost to patients and their families for treatment weeks was $72.81, and for nontreatment weeks it was $45.88. Approximately 45% of these costs were out‐of‐pocket expenses, and 55% were wages lost. Transportation and food were the largest out‐of‐pocket expenses. Patients living at greater distance from treatment had higher out‐of‐pocket costs, and younger patients reported more wages lost. Fourteen percent of the patients were estimated to be spending more than 50% of their weekly incomes on nonmedical expenses, and these patients were found largely in the lower‐income categories. A method is proposed for using these data to estimate total nonmedical expenses for different treatment regimens, and also for estimating cancer patients' total nonmedical costs nationally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2388-2392
Number of pages5
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 1984

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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