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Information about all aspects of finances affected by a serious health condition. Includes income sources such as work, investments, and private and government disability programs, and expenses such as medical bills, and how to deal with financial problems.
Information about all aspects of health care from choosing a doctor and treatment, staying safe in a hospital, to end of life care. Includes how to obtain, choose and maximize health insurance policies.
Answers to your practical questions such as how to travel safely despite your health condition, how to avoid getting infected by a pet, and what to say or not say to an insurance company.


Work can be a source of income, health insurance, disability income and other important benefits. It can also help reduce the stress of a diagnosis, treatment and survivorship and make you feel normal.

A diagnosis by itself should not present a problem at work or even keep you from changing jobs. There are laws to protect against discrimination in hiring and firing, and laws that require you be given a reasonable accommodation if necessary to help you do your job.  There are even laws that require that you be given time off and that benefits be continued during the time off - though the is usually without pay.

To determine whether you should try to continue to work, consider the following:

  • If you are considering treatment, how will it affect work? Your schedule? (Ask your treatment team)
  • What are the physical and mental demands of the job?
  • How flexible is the work environment? 
  • Can changes be made to accommodate your needs?
  • What are your financial concerns?
  • How is your identity tied to work?
  • Have your work priorities changed?

It can be useful to use a diagnosis as an action alert to:

  • Examine the relationship between work and personal time.
  • Think about how to maximize your income, benefits -- and job satisfaction.
  • Prepare in case you ultimately want or need to stop work because of your health condition.

If you own your own business, or are self employed, or are considering starting your own business or becoming self employed, your health condition raises questions that are better to address sooner rather than later. The questions are covered in the other sections of this article.

At Work

You can still maximize your income and benefits at work in spite of your diagnosis.

If you are working, thinking of changing jobs, or thinking of returning to work, understanding your benefits can help you make the most of them.

While you are working, you are likely protected from discrimination. Your employer may even be required to make reasonable accommodations so you can continue to perform your job. In order to gain that protection, you will have to tell your employer that you have a physical condition. You don't have to tell co-workers, but it may be advisable.

There is generally paid and unpaid time off in case you need it for treatments or because of your health condition.

You are generally entitled to have your medical expenses paid and to an income if you are injured on the job or become ill due to your job.

Take the appropriate steps now in case at some point you have to go on disability. It will relieve stress and worry now, and make things easier if it ever does happen. Unexpected disability can happen for any number of reasons unrelated to your health condition.

If you are considering going onto disability, there are steps to take to maximize your situation before you leave work.

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At Work Workers Compensation

Work Termination

Whether you are ready to stop working, have to stop because of disability or are fired, there are steps to take to maximize your situation.

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Work Termination

Going Back To Work

When to go back to work, to what job, and how to deal with the return both physically and emotionally are subjects to consider for everyone who is considering returning to work.

Most disability benefit programs offer incentives and other encouragement to get people to attempt to return to work when they feel able to. Benefits can generally be reinstated if the return is not successful. Some programs even continue to pay benefits once you've returned to work.

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Return To Work 101

Seeking Work

Many people living with a medical condition believe they are locked into their current job. People with illnesses or disabilities who are just entering the workforce often share the same fears. In reality, there are federal and state laws which are aimed at preventing job lock for people with a medical condition or disability.

Being an educated job seeker increases the likelihood of finding a job that maximizes finances, benefits and job satisfaction.

When you look for a new job, keep in mind the effect of changing jobs on your existing benefits.

When you think about your work options, don't rule out the possibility of self-employment or starting your own small business. Being self-employed might make it easier for you to work. A small business may provide a way to obtain the health insurance coverage you want, and possibly even disability income coverage.

Self Employment/ Business Ownership

If you are self-employed or the owner of a business, your health condition can have a major impact on many areas of your business. Now is the time to think them through carefully.

Don't let your diagnosis (as compared to the current state of your health) keep you from considering becoming self employed, or starting your own business.