Insurance and Financing
Southwest Bariatric Surgeons believes that because weight loss surgery can improve or eliminate serious medical conditions, it should be covered by your health insurance. When coverage is available in a patient’s policy, our Patient Advocates work with our patients to help get their surgery covered by insurance.
Unfortunately, not all insurance policies include coverage for weight loss surgery. And some that do provide coverage impose requirements patients must meet before being approved for surgery (e.g., diet history requirement). Your coverage and the requirements you must meet depend on what your employer (or you) purchased in the policy. For example, if you and your neighbor both have Humana insurance, one of you may have coverage for Lap-Band surgery and one of you may not.
Southwest Bariatric Surgeons wants you to know your coverage availability, requirements, and financial responsibilities before you have your first appointment so you can avoid surprises along the way to surgery. That's why we contact your insurance company prior to your first visit, then call you to discuss your insurance benefits and schedule your appointment.
When you attend one of our seminars, you’ll be provided with a questionnaire that includes some basic questions about your health and requests your insurance information. The medical information enables us to preliminarily assess whether you might be a candidate for surgery. In addition, we will use this information to contact your insurance company to find out about your coverage. (It helps if you bring copies of the front and back of your insurance cards to the seminar.)
What You Should Do
Please know that Southwest Bariatric Surgeons tries to inform patients on coverage and requirements, but insurance companies do add or change requirements without telling us. We strongly recommend that you read your insurance booklet and/or contact your insurance company and visit their Web site to learn about your coverage and any coverage requirements.
If you’re told your policy has an exclusion for coverage of bariatric surgery (in other words, won’t cover it), please read the clause (or, if on the phone, ask the customer service rep to read it). Sometimes there’s an exception for medical necessity. Please also let us contact the insurance company. We make these calls frequently, so we can sometimes get a more accurate answer on the exclusion issue.
Southwest Bariatric Surgeons hopes that your surgery will be covered by your health insurance, but not all policies provide coverage. In the event we discover that your policy does not have coverage, we will contact you to discuss the cost of surgery and provide you with contact information for companies that provide financing. Fortunately, there are more options available for medical financing today - even for people with less than stellar credit history.
These financing companies have realized that people who have weight loss surgery may improve their financial situation. Patients often save money by reducing their medication and food bills. Plus, their career prospects may improve.
Get Started Today
Attend a free seminar to learn more about surgery and Southwest Bariatric Surgeons. Here, you'll learn important information and get the forms you need to start the process. Click here to find a convenient seminar and register.