The Effects of Sickle Cell Disease and How Accessia Health Can Help

September 21, 2022 — Imagine you’re an expecting parent. You’re so excited for the little bundle of joy growing and about to be born. As routine tests are taken, your doctor suggests doing a genetic test for sickle cell disease, an inherited blood disorder, since you and your partner are both carriers. The results come back, and it is confirmed that your baby has tested positive for sickle cell anemia. 

This was Rhonda and Kevin’s story as their daughter Naomi was diagnosed with sickle cell disease before birth.

How Often Does This Happen?

Rhonda and Kevin’s story is not uncommon. Approximately 1 in 375 African Americans in the United States is born with the disease. It affects approximately 100,000 Americans in general. 

There was a time when individuals with sickle cell disease would not live past five years old. Today, patients are living into their 50s but tend to live 20 to 30 years less than people without the condition.

Tell Me More

Sickle cell anemia affects your red blood cells’ shape, turning the round flexible discs into stiff sickle cells blocking the blood flow. Symptoms often include fatigue, extreme pain due to blood flow blockage, swelling of hands and feet, frequent infections, delayed growth, vision issues, one-sided paralysis, numbness, and headaches. Even with these symptoms, Naomi did not let it stop her from doing what she loved. 

“Though the difficult moves and practice schedule causes her more pain and exhaustion than most children, Naomi keeps dancing — ballet, pointé, jazz, modern.” 

While sickle cell disease is a challenging condition to manage, advances in treatment have made living with the disease easier.

Disease Care and Treatment Costs

Blood transfusion, allogenic stem cell transplantation, and specialized medication are a few ways to treat sickle cell disease. The average cost of one blood transfusion treatment is $3,700. Average monthly pain management is around $730. Patients like Naomi face significant expenses for their critical life-saving care. Her parents have experienced the financial strain of keeping their little girl healthy. 

Many in the U.S. are experiencing the financial strain Naomi’s parents faced. This is where patient assistance organizations like Accessia Health can help.

This Is Where We Come In

Accessia Health has an established Sickle Cell Disease Program positioned to provide financial assistance for copays, insurance premiums, medical expenses, and medical-related travel for eligible patients. 

For more information, or to see if you qualify for assistance in any of our available programs, check out our prescreening tool and apply today. You can also call us at 1-800-366-7741.* 

Our Sickle Cell Disease Program is in need of funding. To support those seeking assistance with Sickle Cell Disease, click here to donate. 


*Please consult with your healthcare provider or seek professional medical treatment if you have any medical concerns. Please do not disregard any professional medical advice or take any delay in seeking medical treatment based on anything you may have read in this blog, on this website or in any linked materials contained within. Thank You.