If the cost of weight loss surgery gives you pause, you’re not alone. One of the biggest obstacles (and fears) many people face when considering weight loss surgery is the cost. While weight loss surgery might seem like a large expense, you can afford it.
In fact, there are a medley of payment options available to bariatric patients. Let’s dive into the cost of weight loss surgery to give you an idea of what you should expect.
Factors that Determine the Cost of Weight Loss Surgery
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the average bariatric surgery will typically cost anywhere from $20,000 to $25,000. Several factors determine the overall price of the procedure, including:
The Type of Weight Loss Surgery
There are numerous types of weight-loss surgeries, including sleeve gastrectomy, biliopancreatic diversion, adjustable gastric banding, gastric bypass, and vertical gastric banding (commonly referred to as stomach stapling).
Additional weight loss options include an electric implant device and intragastric balloons. Each surgery has a different price point. Speak with your bariatric surgeon to determine which surgery is best suited for your situation, and the subsequent cost of the procedure.
The Clinic or Hospital
The clinic or hospital you choose will play a major role in how much you’ll ultimately end up paying for bariatric surgery. At Olde Del Mar Surgical, we understand the lofty costs of weight loss surgery. That’s why we make it a point to sit down with our patients to discuss payment options best suited for their situation.
The Surgeon’s Fees
Surgeon fees can range depending on the expertise of the surgeon, where you live, and the type of bariatric surgery you’re undergoing.
If you are receiving any other procedures, such as gallstone removal or hiatal hernia surgery, this can sometimes offset the cost of bariatric surgery.
Can You Rely on Health Insurance to Pay for Weight Loss Surgery?
Whether or not your health insurance plan will pay for weight loss surgery depends on your provider. Look at the fine print of your policy and speak with your insurer to determine what’s covered and what isn’t.
Since the launch of the Affordable Care Act, nearly half of the states in the US require major medical insurers to provide coverage for weight loss surgery. That said, if you do not have health insurance, or if you don’t live in a state that requires mandatory coverage of bariatric surgery, there’s a high likelihood that you will have to come out of pocket to cover the procedure.
If you find yourself in this type of situation, there are still options available to you to help you pay for the procedure which we will cover in a later section.
How to Get Your Insurance to Cover Bariatric Surgery
The vast majority of major insurance companies require that patients meet specific qualifications before they’re willing to approve coverage for bariatric surgery. These qualifications include:
You Must Provide Proof That Bariatric Surgery is Necessary
Many insurance companies require proof that surgery is the solution of last resort for any weight-related problems you may be experiencing.
Speak to your bariatric surgeon to obtain your medical history and the documentation you need to submit to your health care provider.
You Must Undergo a Nutritional Evaluation
You will be required to work closely with a nutritionist to create a specific dietary plan that promotes weight loss to help improve your overall health and keep off excess weight over the long term.
You May Need a Psychological Evaluation
Weight loss surgery should not be taken lightly. It is a life-changing procedure that will require a complete change in diet, physical activity, and habits.
Healthcare providers may require a psychological evaluation to ensure that you understand the full weight of your decision to undergo surgery. The assessment is also used to ensure you’re not engaging in old habits, such as binge eating.
You May Need to Start a Diet Program
Due to the significant long-term impact weight loss surgery will have on your life, healthcare providers may suggest you complete a 6-month weight loss program before they give you approval for the procedure.
While not required by Medicare, diet programs like these are strongly recommended by most insurance providers. Generally, you will be required to visit your bariatric surgeon for six-months.
The point of the program isn’t to lose weight, but to demonstrate to your healthcare provider that you’re fully committed to the lifestyle changes required after undergoing bariatric surgery.
What if Your Insurance Doesn’t Cover Bariatric Surgery?
Not every medical provider is required to provide coverage for weight loss surgery. If you’re denied coverage, there are numerous avenues you can take when it comes to financing your procedure. You can afford weight loss surgery, and we’re here to help you explore your options.
At Olde Del Mar Surgical, we’ll provide you with an exam to determine the bariatric surgery best suited for your situation.
When it comes to financing, we have a variety of options available that are affordable and tailored towards your needs.
One option to finance your bariatric surgery is third-party financing. In particular, we’ve established a relationship with Prosper Healthcare Lending.
Their benefits include:
- Immediate decisions for loans under $35,000
- Longer terms for lower monthly payments
- No collateral required
- No prepayment penalties
- Fast and easy loan inquiry process
- 100% confidential
If you decide to go down the route of third-party financing, the best course of action may be to pay for your care well in advance of the procedure. Many hospitals and medical facilities offer significant discounts to patients who pay for their care in advance.
Weighing Your Options
One of the most daunting aspects of weight loss surgery is the cost. However, you absolutely can afford weight loss without sacrificing quality of care, even if your insurance provider refuses to cover the procedure.
Learn more about your options, so you can move forward with life-changing weight loss surgery. At Olde Del Mar Surgical, we put our clients first in the battle against health crippling weight. Reach out to us today to learn more about weight loss surgery and how it can change your life for the better.