Travel Assistance Grants

About the TAG Program

In 2012, OMF created the Travel Assistance Grant (TAG) program to provide for one of the most requested types of assistance - financial aid for treatment-related travel. The TAG is need-based. Typically the threshold to be considered for a travel grant is those who earn less than $50,000 annually.

ALL applications for assistance requests must be done via our on-line application process.  We no longer accept handwritten applications.

The Awards

OMF has distributed over $120,000 in travel awards since beginning the program.
We have given out 100+ TAG awards.
TAG awards are typically distributed based on an event, such as a patient and their caregiver needing to visit MD Anderson in Houston or JUH in Philadelphia for treatment but having a difficult time paying for that trip. The program looks to distribute no more than $1500 per patient and $1500 per caregiver per trip (we've found that as a rule of thumb most covered trips are around $100-$1,500).

TAG awards cover just travel – round-trip coach class airfare, rail travel or, gas. We can also provide basic hotel accommodations as well.

There is a 3 award and $1,500 lifetime cap (whichever is reached first) on TAG awards for individual patients and, for patients traveling with a caregiver (often a spouse), the total TAG award amount is a maximum of $3,000.

In all cases, the final award package is developed by OMF’s Board and director to best fit the particular needs of the applicant.  

Selection Criteria

Applications for TAG Awards will be evaluated solely on need.

Factors that will be weighed when evaluating each application include the unique financial situation of the applicant and their family, how long they have been battling OM and their total total out-of-pocket expenses related to disease treatment.

As with most application processes, there are no hard and fast rules. However, the grants are need-based. Typically, individuals who earn less than $50,000 annually are considered for the program. But, we can say that if you have a need to see a specific expert for a specific treatment and you don't have the funds to cover your transportation to see that expert, we will do our best to accommodate you through this unique program.

Apply for a TAG Award

Requesting travel for yourself or for a family member is easy. Simply click here or on the blue box to the right to access the online TAG application.

Along with the confidential questionnaire, we'll need you to submit proof of your income/financial status, along with any supporting materials such as a Schedule C, if self employed.  An OMF representative will get back to you shortly (usually 3-5 business days) to take the next steps in assessing your need and then arranging for your travel.

If you have any questions about the program, drop us an email at TAG@ocularmelanoma.org.

Other Travel Assistance Resources

Though some airlines offer compassionate airfare, similar to bereavement airfare, the following organizations help people in need seek free air transportation to specialized health care facilities.

Air Care Alliance
Corporate Angel Network Inc.
Mercy Medical Airlift
The National Patient Travel Center
ALL applications for assistance requests must be done on-line as we no longer accept handwritten applications.
If you have any questions, please email info@ocularmelanoma.org.