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How to Avoid Long Waitlists for Your Bariatric Surgery

Posted by skymedicus STAFF on 7/24/2017 9:38 AM | Last Modified: September 26, 2017

If you’re like thousands of Americans each year, you’re facing a “good news, bad news” scenario – and it’s filling you with worry, anxiety and frustration.

The good news is that your insurance will cover all or most of the cost of your bariatric surgery (a.k.a. weight loss surgery). You’re luckier than hundreds of thousands of other people who don’t have coverage.

The bad news is that you’re facing a long waiting list. According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, approximately 180,000 people undergo bariatric surgery in the U.S. each year. 

What’s more – and quite shockingly – this annual figure represents less than 1% of dangerously overweight or obese Americans who are candidates for bariatric surgery. This means the number of bariatric surgeries in the U.S. will only increase in the years ahead; as will the size of waiting list.

And so, the question you need to answer is: how can you avoid long waitlists for bariatric surgery? Below, we suggest 3 possibilities:

3 Ways to Avoid Long Wait-lists for Bariatric Surgery

1. Book your bariatric surgery abroad.

Each year, thousands of Americans head abroad to popular medical tourism destinations like Mexico, Costa Rica, Thailand, India, Singapore, Brazil and many others, in order to get the bariatric surgery they need – yet without being obliged to sign-up for waitlists of any kind. It’s common for the surgery to take place within weeks of booking.

2. Speak with your doctor.

Your doctor may agree to champion your cause in an attempt to shorten your waiting period. Frankly, this is a longshot, because the issue is typically not a matter of judgement or preference, but of resources. There are only so many hospitals and surgeons available. However, it may be possible for your doctor to establish that your health is seriously at risk, which would likely shorten your waiting period. 

3. Speak with your surgeon.

You may also wish to speak directly with your surgeon to learn more about the waiting list, and the criteria – which is not “first come, first served”, but prioritized based on need and urgency. Frankly, speaking with your surgeon will not reduce your time on the waiting list. However, you may get some useful insight and information that can help you expedite the process.

Avoiding Long Waiting Lists for Bariatric Surgery

If your goal is to undergo bariatric surgery as soon as possible, then all else being equal, the most practical solution is to have your surgery abroad.

What’s more, it’s very likely that your insurance company will support your decision, since bariatric surgery abroad is anywhere from 30-80% less costly than the same procedure in the U.S. You may also be able to use HSA dollars to cover your deductible, or other out-of-pocket expenses.

Learn More

To learn more, contact the SkyMedicus team today. We have in-depth experience helping people schedule and obtain the life changing – and often life saving – bariatric surgery abroad that they need, and deserve. Your consultation with us is free, and there’s never any obligation or risk.

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Topics: Bariatric Surgery

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