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What’s Behind the Major Cost Savings of Weight Loss Surgery Abroad?

Posted by skymedicus STAFF on 7/24/2017 7:05 PM | Last Modified: September 26, 2017

When people start researching weight loss surgery abroad, one of the first things they notice – usually in an awestruck, jaw-dropping way – is just how much cheaper it is to head abroad to Mexico,CostaRica, Brazil, Thailand, India, Singapore, and so on.  For example, the same weight loss surgery in the US that costs $35,000 can cost $15,000 outside of the country. 

Naturally, this dramatic cost difference makes many people wonder: what’s behind the savings? After all, saving 10-20 percent is one thing. But 50 percent or more? That takes some explaining! 

Fortunately, as the millions (yes, millions) of people across the U.S. and around the world who take advantage of weight loss surgery abroad each year discover, there’s no hidden catch or surprise fees. Below, we highlight the logical reasons why the cost difference is so huge:

  • Lower Insurance Costs

Qualified and licensed doctors abroad are required to purchase insurance, just as their counterparts must in the U.S. However, the cost difference is staggering.

For example, it’s not uncommon for U.S. doctors to pay premiums of more than $100,000 each year. However, in other countries such as Mexico, Costa Rica and many others, the annual premium cost can be under $10,000.  

  • Lower Labor Costs

Doctors abroad are well paid. However, compared to their U.S. counterparts, their salary is significantly lower. And the same applies to nurses, hospital/practice staff, and so on. All of these cost savings translate into lower fees for performing weight loss surgery compared to the U.S. It’s as simple and straightforward as that.

  • Lower Real Estate, Equipment & Operational Costs 

Doctors and hospitals abroad face significantly lower real estate and operational costs. For example, in the U.S. building a hospital costs tens or hundreds of millions of dollars -- whereas in Thailand or Brazil, it can cost a few million. Equipment costs and operational costs (utilities etc.) are also much lower than the U.S.; especially in big cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York City.

  • Simpler Billing Model

Many doctors and hospitals in the U.S. pay what amounts to a small fortune each year to manage accounts receivables, and collect debts. It’s not something that they like to promote or talk about, but it happens every day and it’s a big, expensive problem. However, with medical tourism patients there are no accounts receivable issues – and hence, no costs for doctors and hospitals to bear.

The Bottom Line

As you can see, there are no confusing or concerning reasons why weight loss surgery abroad is so much cheaper. It’s simply costs less than the same surgery in the U.S., and doctors and hospitals pass that savings onto patients; both because it’s the right thing to do, and because they’re competing with others for medical tourism dollars, and want to offer the best value possible. That’s great news for patients! 

Learn More

To learn more about weight loss surgery abroad, contact the SkyMedicus team today. Your consultation with us is free. Also check out our free infographic comparing the cost of weight loss surgery overseas:

Comparing the cost of weight loss surgery overseas

Topics: Surgery Abroad, Weight Loss Surgery

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