If you are privately insured your health fund will cover any hospital expenses. Some health funds do charge an excess which can be up to $500 depending on your fund and level of cover. When joining a health fund for the first time, most will require a 12 month waiting period before you can use your health insurance.
Common item numbers used in weight loss surgery
When contacting your health fund, you will need to know which item numbers to quote.
Sleeve Gastrectomy: 31575
Gastric Bypass: 31572
Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band: 31569
Reversal of weight loss procedure: 31584
There is a single out of pocket expense (GAP) required that varies for each procedure, please contact us for more information on cost.
What types of revision weight loss surgery are there?
Laparoscopic conversion of Gastric Band to Gastric Bypass
Laparoscopic conversion of Sleeve Gastrectomy to Gastric Bypass
Laparoscopic removal of gastric bands incur NO surgical out of pocket expense. Dr Ghosh can discuss the safest and most effective revision option for you. A 3 month waiting time is required for a Gastric Band conversion to a Gastric Bypass before the definitive procedure is performed.
Post-operative dietician appointments in person / phone / email for 12 months
Surgical follow-up appointments with Dr Ghosh for life
Anaesthetic fees vary according to the type and length of the operation. Dr Ghosh has a close relationship with his anaesthetic team and average costs can range from $600 – $1,200 out of pocket but some costs may be rebatable, depending on your health fund.
Depending on your general health, we may arrange for you to see other specialists prior to surgery such as cardiologists or respiratory physicians. You may be charged for these visits.
Why is there a gap?
Dr Ghosh does not charge a gap for general surgical procedures but unfortunately the full costs for providing quality medical care for weight loss procedures are not adequately covered by Medicare. Costs are higher because multiple medical professionals are involved in your care and the follow-up by your surgeon is life-long.
What if I am not privately insured?
If you are not insured, the most cost effective way is to join a health fund. Most funds will allow you to proceed with your weight loss procedure after 12 months. It is still possible to pay for your operation by self-funding, this is a very expensive option and most people choose to apply for funds to be released from their superannuation. We are happy to discuss these options at your consultation.
Can I access my superannuation to fund my surgery?
Yes, it is possible to access your superannuation to help pay for your surgery. Please download the application form from the Department of Human Services website. This can be discussed in more detail during your consultation. 2 printed copies are required for both your GP and Dr Ghosh to complete. It takes around 6 weeks to release the funds to your bank.
Rebates from the Australian Tax Office (ATO)
Weight loss surgery procedures qualify for medical expenses safety net. If the net total of your medical expenses exceeds $2,120 you can claim a tax offset of 20% of your net medical expenses over $2,120.