Prostate Cancer Can Often Be Treated Successfully

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men (after skin cancer), but it can often be treated successfully. If you have prostate cancer or are close to someone who does, knowing what to expect can help you cope.

Early prostate cancer usually causes no symptoms. More advanced prostate cancers sometimes cause symptoms, such as:

  • Problems urinating, including a slow or weak urinary stream or the need to urinate more often, especially at night
  • Blood in the urine or semen
  • Trouble getting an erection (erectile dysfunction or ED)
  • Pain in the hips, back (spine), chest (ribs), or other areas from cancer that has spread to bones
  • Weakness or numbness in the legs or feet, or even loss of bladder or bowel control from cancer pressing on the spinal cord

When You're Told You Have Prostate Cancer

  • What are the chances that the cancer has spread beyond my prostate? If so, is it still curable?
  • Do I need any other tests before we decide on treatment?
  • Should I see any other types of doctors before deciding on treatment?
  • What is the clinical stage and Gleason score (grade) of my cancer? What do those mean to me?
  • If I’m concerned about the costs and insurance coverage for my diagnosis and treatment, who can help me?

 

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FAQs

How does the Spousal Credit work?

The 2012 collective bargaining agreement permits employees to receive a credit of up to $1,200 if their spouse opts out of the Transit Employees’ Health & Welfare Plan’s health insurance program. It can only be used as a credit against medical and dental benefit expenses incurred as a Participant in the Plan. You must elect the spousal credit option each year.

Up to $100 per month will be applied to reduce the cost of your medical and dental insurance. It cannot be applied to reduce the cost of any supplemental life insurance you may have elected or of any other voluntary benefit.

Example

Your plan requires a monthly contribution of $80 toward single coverage and $208 toward family coverage. Here is how the credit will work:

  • For a family with only employee and spouse coverage, the spousal credit would change your plan from family to single (from $208 to $80) and the credit would further reduce the monthly contribution for single coverage ($80) to zero.
  • For a family with employee, spouse and children coverage, the spousal credit would not change your family plan coverage ($208), but it would reduce the $208 amount you pay to $108 (the maximum credit of $100 per month).

This credit is available to employees and retirees, but cannot be combined with the employee opt-out payment. This credit is available only if the employee or retiree remains covered in the Transit Employees Health and Welfare program.

You can only elect the spousal credit option during the annual open enrollment period, usually in November of each year. It will be effective for your premiums for the following January 1st. Download the Spousal Credit form here.

If you have more questions, please contact the Health and Welfare Plan Office.

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