The cost of bariatric surgery

January 30, 2020

 

Obesity is the #1 public health problem facing America today, yet private insurance policies and many employers do not offer coverage for the surgical treatment of obesity. Fortunately, we have affordable pricing for our self-pay patients and offer a FastTrack program so that patients can have surgery within 3-4 weeks of their decision to pursue weight loss surgery. 

 

If you are fortunate to have bariatric surgery coverage, then we are here to help you navigate this frustrating process.

 

Insurance for gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery

 

If you work for a large employer, then you may very well have coverage for weight loss surgery. 

It can be as easy as checking with your human resources department or calling the number on the back of your insurance card to find out if they cover bariatric surgery. 

 

If you do have coverage, it generally takes anywhere from 3 to 9 months to complete the pre-approval process before you can proceed with the surgery. This wait time is so long because most insurance companies require physician-supervised weight loss attempts, psychological evaluations, and evidence that your primary care physician supports you getting the surgery. 

 

The bariatric surgery insurance approval process can be challenging and confusing, but we are here to help! The TriStar Centennial Center for Weight Management has dedicated insurance specialists that will help you navigate the process.  

 

If you know you have bariatric coverage and meet the BMI criteria, the next step is to Register as a New Patient with the Centennial Center for Weight Management to start the insurance verification and pre-approval process.

 

Self-pay FastTrack requirements for gastric bypass and gastric sleeve

 

Self-pay is an option if your insurance policy doesn’t cover the surgery or you don’t meet their requirements. This option speeds up the process for when you can have the surgery because qualification requirements are less stringent. 

 

With this option, you can have a consultation with me right away and begin planning for your surgery. With our FastTrack program, you can expect to have surgery within 3-4 weeks after you decide to move forward. 

 

To qualify for the Self-Pay FastTrack option for either gastric bypass and gastric sleeve, you must meet these requirements: 

 

  • BMI ≥ 35 

  • History of failed dietary attempts

  • No unstable or untreated mental illness

  • Not a smoker or willing to quit smoking prior to surgery

  • Commitment to life-long medical surveillance

  • At least 16 years of age

 

The self-pay option is less strict because insurance companies use outdated data based on riskier open bariatric surgeries in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Minimally invasive surgeries today, like laparoscopic or robotic-assisted, are much safer. Therefore, patients don’t have to be as sick to outweigh the risks of surgery.  

 

Self-pay FastTrack financing and benefits

 

The truth is, financing for the gastric bypass or gastric sleeve surgery can be less than a new car loan. Some patients choose to borrow against their 401(k) plan or utilize a home equity line of credit. We also work with several leading healthcare finance companies, like Prosper Healthcare Lending, Lending USA, and CareCredit. 

 

In addition, the IRS allows taxpayers undergoing weight loss surgery to deduct expenses for these procedures. Deductions are allowed for uncompensated costs of treatment if they add up to more than 7.5% of the patient’s adjusted gross income. Also, if you have a healthcare spending account (FSA/HSA), some or all of the costs associated with these surgeries may be reimbursable. 

 

Gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery packages: 

 

Gastric Sleeve: $17,500 (total cost)

Gastric Bypass: $22,000 (total cost) 

 

Both packages include: 

 

  • Pre-surgical testing including radiology and blood tests

  • Surgeon, anesthesia, and hospital fees

  • A lifetime of post-operative visits with Dr. Houston

  • Lifetime access to our registered dietitians, exercise physiologist, and Psychological Support Program

  • BLIS Care of complications related to surgery for 90 days after the procedure

 

Because we are a Center of Excellence for bariatric surgery, BLIS Care covers complications in the first 90 days after surgery. With BLIS Care, patients feel comfortable financing their surgery knowing that they are covered should a rare complication arise. 

 

If you have further questions about our self-pay options or would like to schedule a consultation, get in touch with us today!

 

 

 

Contact Nashville Weight Loss Solutions for more information about weight-loss surgery.

 

Are you dieting and exercising on your own but still not getting the results you want? Nashville Weight Loss Solutions offers a comprehensive range of proven weight loss programs to help, whether you need to lose 20 pounds or 200. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation!

 

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Nashville Weight Loss Solutions

2200 Murphy Avenue

Nashville, TN 37203

615-342-5820

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