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Frequently Asked Questions

About LCF

What does Lazarex Cancer Foundation do?
At Lazarex Cancer Foundation we improve the outcome of cancer care, giving hope, dignity and life to end stage cancer patients and the medically underserved by providing assistance with costs for FDA clinical trial participation, identification of clinical trial options, community outreach and education.

Why Lazarex? What Makes Us Unique?
Lazarex is the only 501(c)(3) public charity that does what we do. We focus on helping patients with all types of cancer, of all ages, from all walks of life. We remove the barriers to clinical trial participation for advanced stage patients seeking life through FDA clinical trials. We promote early stage diagnosis to increase survival, especially for the medically underserved. For these patients Lazarex is their last line of defense.

What is a public charity?
Our public charity status is what allows us to provide financial support directly to individuals. Without it, we cannot support our patients. Because Lazarex is a public charity we are dependent upon the community to raise our much needed funds. Only 33% of our annual income can come from one source. The rest must come from donors like you!

How long has Lazarex been a foundation?
Lazarex was founded in 2006 and helped their first patient in 2007.

What is Lazarex’s 501(c)(3) tax identification number?
Our identification number is 20-2562494.

What types of cancer does Lazarex help with?
Lazarex helps patients with any type of cancer diagnosis.

To whom does Lazarex provide assistance?
Lazarex assists advanced stage cancer patients of any age and ethnicity, with any type of cancer, nationwide who wish to find out about or participate in an FDA (Federal Drug Administration) clinical trial.

How is financial assistance requested?
Call 925-820-4517 Monday-Friday between 9AM-5PM pacific time. A Lazarex staff member will take the contact information and then send the patient or their advocate an application to complete and return.

How long will it take to be contacted by Lazarex to speak about financial assistance?
Within approximately one week after receiving the completed application for financial assistance (with expenses related to clinical trial participation) the Lazarex Patient Services Manager will contact the patient or their advocate to discuss what assistance can be provided.

Once the agreement of services with Lazarex is signed, reimbursements for expenses related to clinical trial participation may begin.

How did Lazarex get its name?
The name is part biblical reference to Lazarus (who was given another chance at life) and a nod the clinical trial drug Rexin G that was used to treat Mike Miller. Mike, and his family’s cancer experience, was the inspiration for Lazarex Cancer Foundation.

Assistance FAQ

How does a patient get help finding a clinical trial?
A Lazarex staff member will take the contact information and the patient or their advocate an application to complete and return to Lazarex. The Lazarex Patient Navigator will contact him/her to discuss clinical trial options. Call 925.820.4517 Monday – Friday, 9AM-5PM pacific time.

What is Clinical Trial Navigation?
If a patient is looking to participate in a clinical trial the Lazarex Patient Navigator will work with them or their advocate to help identify potential clinical trial options. Clinical trial choices are based on many factors including diagnosis, treatment history, physical condition and home situation.

What phases of clinical trials will Lazarex reimburse?
Lazarex will reimburse participation expenses for any phase therapeutic clinical trial.

Does the patient need to be under a certain income level in order to receive assistance from Lazarex at this time?
Not for assistance with clinical trial navigation. Income questions and guidelines are part of the application for financial assistance.

Does the patient need to be a United States citizen to receive financial assistance and/or clinical trial navigation through Lazarex?
No, a patient does not need to be United States citizen but the clinical trial he/she is participating in, or may choose to participate in, must be an FDA sponsored clinical trial held at a site in the United States.

What expenses are reimbursed by Lazarex during FDA clinical trial participation?
Lazarex can help pay for the following expenses related to clinical trial participation:

  • Transportation (economy airfare, gas, rental cars, taxi fare, parking/tolls)
  • Lodging (housing during clinical trial participation)
  • Certain medical expenses not covered by insurance and necessary for clinical trial treatment (Scans, x-rays and blood work above what your insurance covers, reviewed on an individual case by case basis.)

Meals or other incidental expenses are not reimbursed by Lazarex.

Will Lazarex pay for a companion to travel with the patient to the clinical trial?
Yes, Lazarex will cover the same expenses for a companion, however only one hotel room is allowed to submit for reimbursement.

Will Lazarex cover holistic treatments?
At this time we are only covering the direct expenses for clinical trial participation. Lazarex will not cover holistic treatments, including, and not exclusive to, massage, nutritional supplements, acupuncture, acupressure, biofeedback or yoga classes.

Will Lazarex help make travel and lodging arrangements?
Patients receiving financial assistance from Lazarex may receive help making travel and lodging arrangements on a case by case basis.

What types of lodging are covered?
Lazarex will cover economy range hotels (Examples including but not limited to Comfort Inn, Holiday Inn, Residence Inn, and Hampton Inn).

Is there a financial limit for reimbursement?
Yes and that will be discussed at the time of approval.

Will Lazarex pay for other personal expenses?
Lazarex will only cover costs related to FDA clinical trials. Lazarex will not cover personal expenses including, but not limited to mortgage or rent, utility bills, car payments, school costs, childcare, food, caregiver expenses, prescription medicines, alternative treatments insurance payments, etc.

Will Lazarex help pay for standard chemotherapy or radiation treatment outside of a clinical trial?
No, Lazarex only reimburses certain expenses for treatments for patients enrolled in FDA clinical trials.

How are my receipts submitted for reimbursement?
Receipts may be emailed, faxed or mailed into the Lazarex office. Copies versus original receipts are requested.

When are receipts reimbursed?
Submitted travel logs and copies of receipts will be reimbursed on a monthly basis. Receipts received after 45 days from the date of the charge will not be reimbursed. Lazarex does not provide automatic deposits to bank accounts.

Does Lazarex pay for past expenses?
No. Once the agreement of services with Lazarex is signed, the patient may begin to collect receipts for reimbursement from the agreement date forward.

Clinical Trial FAQ

What is Clinical Trial Navigation?
If a patient is looking to participate in a clinical trial the Lazarex Patient Navigator will work with them or their advocate to help identify potential clinical trial options. Clinical trial choices are based on many factors including diagnosis, treatment history, physical condition and home situation.

Does Lazarex place patients in a clinical trial?
No. A Lazarex Patient Navigator will help research trials that the patient may currently be eligible for. The trial options are given to the patient or their advocate to discuss with their personal physician. The clinical trial staff responsible for patient enrollment will make the final decision about whether a patient is eligible to join the trial.

Does Lazarex offer clinical trials?
No. Lazarex is not a medical research company or a doctor’s office, nor does Lazarex dispense medical advice.

How quickly can a patient be placed into a trial?
Once a patient has discussed trial options with their physician, the next step would be to contact the institution hosting the trial. The Clinical Trial Coordinator at the institution will need to review the patient’s medical status to determine if the trial is a fit. Lazarex does not have any influence over whether a patient gets accepted into a clinical trial.

What choices are there regarding the location a patient will go to for a clinical trial?
FDA clinical trials often have multiple sites. The goal is to find a trial site as close to the patient as possible but at times the best options may be away from the area where they live.

What is a placebo?
An inactive substance used as a control in a clinical trial to determine the effectiveness of a medicinal drug.

If a patient enrolls in a clinical trial, might they receive a placebo versus the actual drug?
For practical and ethical reasons, cancer patients that participate in therapeutic clinical trials rarely receive placebos. Researchers assert that in trials for cancer, placebos are inappropriate and all participants should receive active treatment or at least the standard of care (common treatment) for their type of cancer.

What are the four “phases” of clinical trials?
Phase I: Researchers test a new drug or treatment in a small group of people (20–100) for the first time to evaluate its safety, determine a safe dosage range, and identify side effects.

Phase II: The drug or treatment is given to a larger group of people (several hundred) to see if it is effective and to further evaluate its safety.

Phase III: The drug or treatment is given to large groups of people (several hundred to a thousand) to confirm its effectiveness, monitor side effects, compare it to commonly used treatments, and collect information that will allow the drug or treatment to be used safely.

Phase IV: Studies are done after the drug or treatment has been (FDA approved and) released to market to gather information on the drug’s effect in various populations and any side effects associated with long-term use (involves several thousand people).

What phases of clinical trials will Lazarex reimburse?
Lazarex will reimburse participation expenses for any phase therapeutic clinical trial.

Why are clinical trials so important?
They are the capstone of the drug development process and the vehicle our FDA uses to bring new drugs to market safely. Patient participation is critical to the successful completion of a trial. Clinical trials offer medical breakthrough opportunities available today to end stage cancer patients who have no other treatment options. Most often, health insurance doesn’t cover the prohibitive ancillary costs. Lazarex is the only safety net for these patients until we find a cure.

Why should people from every ethnicity participate in clinical trials?
Cancer doesn’t discriminate! As we learn more about cancer and how it interacts with our bodies and the drugs we are developing to fight it, researchers have discovered that a patient’s genetic makeup has a significant impact on the effectiveness of a drug. If we are to develop cures for everyone, we must have people from all segments of our population participating in clinical trials.