From $15,000 Chemo Treatments to $60: My #GetCovered Story

Posted March 28, 2014
By Kendall Brown
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

For some 15 years, I’ve cobbled together a strategy for treating my Crohn’s disease, a serious and painful intestinal condition.

Early on, my amazing mother took a clerical job just to get health insurance that would cover me. Even then it wasn’t easy. I have clear memories of my mom at the kitchen table, poring over our finances, trying to find a way to purchase my daily pills.

For a while, I didn’t have insurance until the Affordable Care Act allowed young adults to remain on their parent’s plan until they turned 26. That was a life-saver for me: Right before my 25th birthday, I required surgery to remove nearly two feet of my intestine. Fortunately, my mom’s insurance covered me then.

What Health Reform Is All About: "I logged onto and enrolled in a plan that reduces the cost of my $15,000 chemotherapy treatments to $60!" -Kendall Brown, 27, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. But I’m 27 now and don’t have that coverage any more. I’m the only fulltime employee of a local nonprofit and my employer couldn’t afford health benefits. Private insurance quotes cited were in the thousands of dollars.

Even when I bought a plan, the insurance company wouldn’t cover the $15,000 chemo treatments I need every six weeks to manage my disease. I was without treatment for more than year, which a doctor warned me would lead to an early death. But I couldn’t afford the chemo. I briefly got some treatment at a free clinic, but that stopped because the clinic was over capacity.

You can imagine my relief when I logged onto and enrolled in a platinum plan. The premium is about $400 a month. I could have selected a much cheaper plan, but this one reduces the cost of my $15,000 chemo to $60! I can afford that.

You may be surprised at how affordable the plans can be. Six out of 10 uninsured Americans can get covered for $100 per month or less – some a lot less.

Whether you have a chronic condition like I do or simply want the peace of mind that comes with quality health insurance, check out your options and sign up for a plan through, which is working smoothly, or in Spanish at

If you prefer talking to a person, you can call 1-800-318-2596 – in any one of 150 languages – at any time or day. To find in-person help nearby, go to and punch in your zip code.

But you have no time to delay! Sign up today. You have only until March 31st to enroll in a Marketplace plan. Otherwise, you won’t be able to sign up until November for coverage that begins next year.

For me, I don’t think you’ve ever seen a happier person getting chemo. It’s literally going to extend my life expectancy.

Content last reviewed on September 18, 2014