prostate cancer and switching jobs

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fulltlt
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 264
   Posted 12/12/2010 8:28 PM (GMT -6)   
I had a job interview last Friday.  What a pleasant surprise it was in this economy and job market.  I submitted my application on Thursday and they called me Friday morning. 
 
I have read that having cancer makes it all that more difficult to switch jobs. 
 
Has anyone here had any experience with this?
 
I do have another option for getting good health insurance.  I retired from a large company in 2001 and could enroll in their insurance plan if I wanted to as a retiree.
It costs more than the plan where I am currently employed so I usually go with the cheaper one.
age 57 2/2010
PSA 8.2 2/2010
biopsy 2/2010 - 2 of 8 left & 2 of 8 right positive, Gleason 3+4=7
attended support group - advised to get a second opinion
second opinion on pathology from Johns Hopkins 4+4=8
PSA 15 4/2010
5 weeks IMRT 4/2010-6/2010 at Copley Hospital in Aurora, IL
91 palladium 103 seeds 7/2010 at Chicago Prostate Center, Westmont, IL
PSA 3.97 10/2010
no ED or incontinence

Ger42
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 189
   Posted 12/12/2010 8:39 PM (GMT -6)   
You don't need to discuss your medical situation with them to get the job. It's your business not theirs. You would only need to tell them if you had a condition that would prevent you from fulfilling the requirements of the position.
Age 68 weight 185 height 6'
Samples taken 4/19/2010 sent to Bostwick
3 out of 12 samples cancer
1) gleason score 3+3 involving 65%
2) gleason score 3+3 involving 65%
3) gleason score 3+3 involving 10%
PSA 3.5 Mar 19
PSA 2.5 Apr 4
Bone scan clean CT scan clean
Da Vinci 10/12/2010 DR Paul Kahn all nerves spared
Home 10/19/20
Cath out 10/22/2010
Prostate 56 gm. Gleason grade 3+4 = 7

fulltlt
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 264
   Posted 12/12/2010 8:49 PM (GMT -6)   
The part I would be concerned about is filling out the health insurance forms.

Tony Crispino
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 8128
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:09 PM (GMT -6)   
fulltlt,
I have a heck of a story about this. My first piece of advice is to be 100% honest about everything that is asked about your ability to perform and on the insurance forms. Anything knowingly incorrect will not help you. But check this out:

When I was diagnosed while with my former employer of 16 years, I quit my job. The reasons I won't go much into other than to say that we were undergoing extreme changes at the company I was at and I had a very successful career and a leading engineer in telecommunications. But the new management was not very strong and were completely unsympathetic about my diagnosis. My ties to execs that were already gone were not popular either I don't believe. With the pressures of a new diagnosis and a strong reputation I decided to just leave and lose the stress that was mounting.

Immediately after I left the economy started its collapse and my desire to start consulting was not going to be a good plan. Instead, I was paying big bucks for COBRA and had to have surgery, radiation and hormonal therapies. And I did not know what would be next.

Enter my current employer. They knew about my diagnosis, they knew I have several months, probably years, ahead of treatment. But they were also aware of my positive reputation in the gaming industry designing many of these mega-resorts telecommunications systems and networks. They hired my about two months after surgery even when I told them that I still had to undergo radiation and that it would take a chunk of time per day to do so. The hearts of this group has a very loyal employee in myself and we have had some great success.

They hired me to start a Nevada operation of sales and service, a territory they strongly wanted to gain access to. i was given the green light to work out of my home office and take whatever time I needed to get passed treatment. As it turned out my oncology team was able to get in at 7:00am for radiation therapy, get home and walk 3 miles, and be at my desk by 9:00am. I didn't miss a day at work.

Things are going very well and in spite of a very difficult here in Las Vegas, we have grown to where I have a crew of 12 in full maintenance and service contracts with a P&L that looks great. I manage a great group that has been very supportive, and I am managed by a great group that did all of the enabling.

I switch off of my COBRA and did not have any issues with pre-existing conditions because I never had a lapse in coverage. I pretty much was treated by the time my new insurance kicked with exception to the HT therapy sessions. I have been with these guys now for 3 1/2 years.

As a person who has the authority to bring new guys in, I look for the honest answers. It does not affect my decisions on who to hire regardless of physical ailment. In fact my senior engineer/Ops manager had lost a leg in a motorcycle while I still worked with him at the old gig. He was the guy I wanted and just like myself, his ailment was not going to prevent me from getting him.

I hope you have similar success. Good luck in the process and if so, good luck in your new job.

Tony
Disease:
Advanced Prostate Cancer at age 44 (I am 48 now)
pT3b,N0,Mx (original PSA was 19.8) EPE, PM, SVI. Gleason 4+3=7

Treatments:
RALP ~ 2/17/2007 at the City of Hope near Los Angeles.
Adjuvant Radiation Therapy ~ IMRT Completed 8/07
Adjuvant Hormone Therapy ~ 28 months on Casodex and Lupron.

Status:
"I beat up this disease and took its lunch money! I am in remission."
I am currently not being treated, but I do have regular oncology visits.
I am the president of an UsTOO chapter in Las Vegas

Blog : www.caringbridge.org/visit/tonycrispino

fulltlt
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 264
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:21 PM (GMT -6)   
TC-LasVegas said...
.... As it turned out my oncology team was able to get in at 7:00am for radiation therapy, get home and walk 3 miles, and be at my desk by 9:00am. I didn't miss a day at work.

That is a great story.   I too never missed one day of work the whole time I was getting IMRT this summer.

142
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 6949
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Fulltlt,
 
In theory, and probably legally, what goes on insurance forms is not to be disclosed to the employer.
 
This would fall under the HIPPA regulations.
 
Now, if your situation interferes with doing your job, it depends on state law. Where I live, they do not have to state a reason to terminate you, but you can appeal if there is a violation of Federal laws. All this said for the US.
 
 

Paralleli
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 123
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:26 PM (GMT -6)   
fultilt,

I don't chime in here very often, but +1 on Ger42's comments. You're healthy right? I've never had to "fill out" a health insurance form and like Tony, (I think) I've been a P.E. for many years. If they have group insurance and they hire you, you should be in. If they ask you about pre-existing conditions, ask them to put those questions in writing, then contact a lawyer. Folks take way more BS then they need to.
IMRT 1/07 - Doing well.

fulltlt
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 264
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:47 PM (GMT -6)   
The company I am at now was going to try to switch from our current BCBSIL group plan to a group plan from Humana. We all had to fill out medical history forms for Humana. I wasn't real happy about that but had to do it anyway. As it turned out they found out Humana was going to be 40+% more than what we were paying so they decided to stay with BCBSIL at only 37% more than last years. My point is that insurance companies are asking about pre-existing conditions for group plans.
age 57 2/2010
PSA 8.2 2/2010
biopsy 2/2010 - 2 of 8 left & 2 of 8 right positive, Gleason 3+4=7
attended support group - advised to get a second opinion
second opinion on pathology from Johns Hopkins 4+4=8
PSA 15 4/2010
5 weeks IMRT 4/2010-6/2010 at Copley Hospital in Aurora, IL
91 palladium 103 seeds 7/2010 at Chicago Prostate Center, Westmont, IL
PSA 3.97 10/2010
no ED or incontinence

goodlife
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2691
   Posted 12/12/2010 9:57 PM (GMT -6)   
I am an employer. Most of the insurance that we purchase doesn't even require a physical or medical history. I am on my second insurance plan since having PC, and have not had a physical or filled out a hostory yet.

That is not to say you won't have to take a physical, or answer health questions, but generally speaking,, group health plans cannot exclude you. They can only give you problems if you are dishonest on the health forms.
Goodlife
 
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injection
No pads, 1/1/10,  9 month PSA < .01
1 year psa (364 days) .01
15 month PSA <.01
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