Paying for Bariatric Surgery
Paying for bariatric surgery is forefront in most patients’ minds. It is also one of the biggest limitations to a patient getting access to the care they may need. While paying for any surgical procedure may seem daunting, bariatric surgery can have a tangible financial benefit over the long term, in the form of fewer medical bills, lower food costs and less time off work, not to mention the intangible potential benefits of a healthier, happier and longer life. There are several financial options to choose from and we can help you decide which makes the most sense. Our office is dedicated to making bariatric surgery more accessible and affordable to all our patients, so we can help you understand the various financial options and help walk you through the process toward surgery. Below, we will discuss the three ways that many bariatric patients choose to pay for their surgery.
Many patients have insurance policies that cover bariatric surgery, but some do not. Insurance coverage will vary between companies and even between plans, therefore it is important that you speak to our office and also your insurance company. Doing so allows you to fully understand the prerequisites as well as any necessary documentation that you need to provide for coverage. Most insurance companies have a set of minimum criteria including BMI level, previous weight loss efforts, medical necessity and a medical weight loss program. We work with you to understand these requirements and help get you through the pre-authorization process. You can also see a list of insurances with which Dr. Higa participates. Bear in mind that different policies will have different copayments, deductibles and co-insurance payments, which may alter your financial obligation.
Insurance Guides and Resources
- Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Arizona Cover Bariatric Surgery?
- Does Cigna Arizona Cover Bariatric Surgery?
- Does United Healthcare Cover Bariatric Surgery in Arizona
For patients whose insurance does not cover bariatric surgery, or for those who do not want to go through the sometimes-lengthy process of pre-authorization for weight loss surgery, there are options for financing your procedure. There is the option of taking out a loan with friends or family, using credit cards to pay for surgery or using our latest resource, CareCredit, to finance the procedure and make regular monthly payments. When considering your financing options, it is important to understand the financial obligations that you will be committing to. If you ask friends or family for a loan, please be fully aware of the implications to your relationship. If you choose to take the personal loan route, feel free to click on the link below to learn more about CareCredit and the plans that may be available to you. You can also contact our office to learn more about the program and understand any other financial options and obligations that you may have.
Dr. Higa worked with one of our partner hospitals to develop and affordable self-pay program for those who cannot or do not wish to use insurance or financing. Of course, cash pay offers the most flexibility of any payment option. Once we have performed the necessary medical checks needed to ensure as safe a procedure as possible, surgery can be scheduled shortly thereafter. We have cash pay options for both the gastric sleeve and the gastric bypass depending on your preference and medical circumstance. To learn more about our cash pay program, please click here. You can also contact us at the office to understand more about your financial obligations and the timeline to surgery.