Will Medicaid Pay For Gastric Bypass


Medicaid Guidelines Coverage Bariatric Surgery

Gastric Bypass Surgery Approval | Medicaid
  • That the patient is psychologically mature and can cope with the post-surgical changes.
  • That the patient and the parent/guardian understand and will follow the required changes in eating habits.
  • That pre-operative nutritional and psychological services are available.
  • How the patient will accept post-operative surgical, nutritional, and psychological services.
  • To correct complications from bariatric surgery such as band malfunction, obstruction or stricture.
  • To convert to a Roux-en-Y gastroenterostomy or to correct pouch failure.

Behavioral health services are not considered part of the bariatric surgery proper, but may be provided as part of the pre-operative or post-operative phase of bariatric surgery.

Which Weight Loss Surgeries Does Medicaid Cover

Gastric Bypass

Gastric bypass is a type of weight loss surgery during which a surgeon operates on your gut and small intestines to make changes to how they digest and absorb food, respectively.

Gastric bypass enables weight loss by:

  • Restricting the amount of food that your gut can hold
  • Limiting the number of nutrients and calories absorbed by your small intestine
  • Transforming your gastrointestinal hormones which help to suppress your appetite and make you fuller for longer

Lap Band Revision

Lap band revision is a bariatric procedure whereby an adjustable silicone band is installed on your stomach to create a small gut section above the band, and the rest of the gut remains below the band. This limits the quantity of food or beverages that you can take in one sitting.

The band is adjustable, and the procedure is reversible. Lap band revision is done laparoscopically, and its not as intrusive as other gut procedures.

Gastric Sleeve

Vertical sleeve gastrectomy or gastric sleeve is a type of weight loss surgery that removes at about 75% of the stomach. Today this is the most common bariatric procedure done in the United States of America.

Medicaid coverage is not 100% there are some things you need to pay for, such as

Online Fundraising For Bariatric Surgery Costs

Figuring out how to pay for weight loss surgery without insurance can be stressful. By crowdfunding on GoFundMe, you can fund your procedure in a safe space while helping reduce the stigma around bariatric surgery for others who need it. Along with dedicated customer support and the security of the GoFundMe Guarantee, you can access your funds within 2-5 business days in most cases.

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Private Health Coverage For Weight Loss Surgery

Furthermore, Private Health Funds will cover the hospital fees associated with any procedure that has an Item Number, including weight loss surgery.

Private Health Funds usually offer different levels of cover depending on your monthly premium or plan.

As is common with most procedures, there is usually an out-of-pocket gap that the patient must pay as the rebates from Medicare and Private Health Funds are not sufficient to cover all the associated costs with our complete

Which Weight Loss Procedures Does Medicaid Cover

Does Medicaid Pay For Gastric Bypass

In most cases, Medicaid covers Lap-Band Surgery, gastric sleeve surgery, and gastric bypass. These are not only readily covered by Medicaid, but also among the most common surgeries recommended. In certain situations, these are accepted as medically vital to the life and wellbeing of the patient.

Gastric bypass reduces the stomach size and bypasses a part of the intestine. Hence, you eat less and the food is also sent straight to the lower part of your intestine. Due to this bypass, absorption of nutrients and calories is reduced. Hence, it reduces food intake and additionally helps result in weight loss. In Lap-Band surgery, the top part of the stomach is covered with silicone bands with balloons. This reduces the space for holding food. Also, the entry to the stomach becomes smaller. The procedure is less invasive compared to others and is done laparoscopically. Additionally, it is preferable as it is easy to reverse and the band can be adjusted. Finally, in gastric sleeve surgery, a sleeve-shaped, smaller stomach is created. As the food does not have much space to sit, it is readily passed to the intestines. Hence, it too reduces intake of food and calorie absorption.

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Does Medicare Cover Bariatric Surgery

Medicare covers some weight-loss surgeries, including laparoscopic banding surgery and gastic bypass surgery.

You need to meet requirements and deemed severely obese. You and your doctor need to get pre-approval for weight-loss surgery.

Similar to other insurers, Medicare will likely require a BMI of at least 35, your weight must also be causing serious health issues and youve attempted for years to lose weight through diet and exercise.

Alternative Weight Loss Methods

Qualifying applicants must also present medical record documentation of failed attempts to lose weight without surgery, including either a minimum of six months enrollment in physician-supervised nutrition and exercise programs or three months participation in a multidisciplinary surgical preparatory regimen. Failed weight loss efforts may indicate an endocrine disorder.

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Brief Overview Of Medicaid Requirements

To qualify for weight loss surgery while using Medicaid, the patient must still meet the requirements of what most other insurance companies state:

  • Your Body Mass Index exceeds 35 and you must have at least one comorbidity, such as high blood pressure, sleep apnea, high cholesterol or diabetes.
  • If you are below the age of 21, you need to have a Body Mass Index exceeding 40 with at least one of the aforementioned comorbidities.

One of the requirements for Medicaid to pay for your surgery coverage is that you need to have your weight loss surgery done through a Center for Excellence. Bariatric Center for Excellence accreditation is designed to indicate which bariatric surgery centers have achieved a level of excellence in both surgery and patient care. Medicaid requires that you visit one of these specific centers to guarantee that you get the best possible treatment. Fortunately Western Bariatric meets the criteria, and is one of the nations Bariatric Centers of Excellence.

Your states Medicaid office can be found, here.

Contact Western Bariatric today and let us help you start your weight loss journey.

Will Medicare Pay For Gastric Bypass Revision Surgery

Amerigroup will pay for Bariatric Surgery! RNY Gastric Bypass

I know that medicare will pay for gastric bypass but does it also cover the surgery to have it reversed.

Answer by Rubberchicken

Medicare will likely not pay for gastric bypass surgery unless a second opinion from a doctor shows that the surgery is needed for assistance in other concurrent health issues, such as diabetes. In the vast majority of obesity cases, Medicare will look for other obesity management alternatives.

Answer by Roland27

That is something that youre going to need to call Medicare and talk to them about. It varies state by state what they cover so its always best to ask BEFORE you get the procedure done to avoid finding out later that for some reason you wont be covered and you have to pay the bill yourself.

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Medicaid Coverage Of Childhood Obesity Assessment And Treatment

Childhood obesity is associated with significant health problems and is an important early risk factor for much of adult morbidity and mortality. Thus, the potential future health-care costs associated with pediatric obesity and its comorbidities are immense and should not be ignored. Medicaid-eligible children are entitled to ongoing nutritional assessment and management, including obesity services, through the EPSDT program. Even when specific treatments for obesity are excluded for adults, Medicaid requires participating states to cover EPSDT benefits for all eligible children younger than age 21. In covering health treatments for children, states are expected to adhere to standards of medical necessity that reflect accepted pediatric standards of care.

Evidence-based guidelines point to the importance of regular screening and intensive behavioral and dietary intervention early in a child’s life to prevent and reverse the deleterious effects of overweight and obesity. All of the recommended prevention, assessment, and treatment guidelines should be covered as part of the EPSDT benefit for eligible children. However, we found evidence that only 11 states would cover obesity-related nutritional and behavioral therapy through the EPSDT program. Even fewer states published any detailed screening or treatment guidelines for childhood obesity for their providers.

Weight Gain After Gastric Bypass

After getting a Roux-en-Y in Maryland, you should experience weight loss that will speed up, slow down, and plateau at various times until you reach your ideal weightassuming you are maintaining a proper diet and exercise routine. However, the occasional patient will only experience initial weight loss, then begin gaining again. An even smaller percentage never lose weight at all.

When a patient gains weight after gastric bypass surgery, it is important that their doctor ascertains the reason this is occurring. This will not only determine what the next steps are, but also might impact whether or not Medicare will pay for gastric bypass revision.

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Body Mass Index Scores Under 40 And Other Qualifying Factors

Medicaid applicants with body mass index scores betweeen 35 and 40 for two years may have gastric bypass surgery paid for by the state if there is medical record documentation of any of the following conditions being complicated or caused by clinically severe obesity: diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, disabling physical trauma, respiratory insufficiency or significant circulatory insufficiency.

How To Get Medicaid Approval For Weight Loss Surgery

Do Medicaid Pay For Gastric Sleeve

If the Medicaid provided by your state covers bariatric surgery, you must consult your physician. Medicaid accepts coverage when there is a medical need for the surgery. It is vital to have a physician who can share relevant information for the medical necessity of bariatric surgery for the patient. Further, to assess the situation, a physician can recommend the patient to approved surgeons.

Approved surgeons help you understand the surgerys basics and different options you may have. After you make a decision, you need to go through some tests and then consult the Medicaid office for pre-approval of the surgery. The process is time-consuming and requires patience as well as perseverance.Before approval, you may have to attend classes to understand the surgery, nutritional requirements, lifestyle changes, and exercises, which are mandatory post the operation. This ensures that the patient understands all implications of the surgery and whats essential to make it successful.

With necessary provisions, you may get approval from Medicaid. These provisions can further include additional classes or further testing. After approval from Medicaid, your surgeon needs to determine your ability to undergo the procedure. This can include medical preparation, blood work, and X-rays. Finally, the surgery is booked. Hence, you get a step closer to a healthier lifestyle and your weight goals.

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How Much Will Medicare Pay

If they approve the procedure, they offer full coverage to the patient. In some instances, other supplement insurance or gap insurance will be needed once the patient has been approved for surgery. This depends on the coverage/plan the patient has and if they have met their deductibles for the year . Because these things are so personal to each patient, it is advisable that patients work directly with both their surgeon and Medicaid to understand the costs associated with the surgery and if they will be responsible for any of them before having surgery.

Hanies Weight Loss Surgery

Stephanie turned to weight loss surgery as a long-term solution to help her live a healthier life. She started a fundraiser to help her cover the surgery price and raised over $3,200 to put toward gastric band surgery, thanks to supportive friends and family members. One year later, Stephanie is down almost 100 pounds.

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The Process For Medicaid Approval

If your state Medicaid covers bariatric surgery the first step you will want to take in getting approval for your situation is to meet with your physician. Medicaid typically requires that there is a medical need for the surgery in order to provide coverage. It is vital that your physician is able to provide information to them regarding your situation and the medical need for the surgery. The physician can then refer you to an approved surgeon to assess your situation.

When meeting with an approved surgeon, they will go over the basics of the surgery and discuss your options. Once you have decided they can run various tests to check out your medical health to go through surgery and then ask for a pre-approval of the surgery from the Medicaid office. This process can take a good deal of time and you will want to try to be patient.

Medicaid and the surgeon may require that you attend classes that discuss the surgery, proper nutrition, exercise, and how to make lifestyle changes after the surgery. This is often required before they will allow you to have the surgery or start the process. This is to ensure that you fully understand what is going to happen and what your role in your success after the surgery is going to be.

Medicaid may approve of the surgery with some provisions that need to be met. This could be further testing, additional classes, or added information to the file. The surgeon can work with you to accomplish these requirements.

Additional Resources:

Criteria For Coverage Of Surgery Costs

I Paid $150 For Gastric Bypass Surgery

In order for Medicaid to cover the cost of your surgery and the associated surgeon visits, you must meet the requirements below.

  • Over the age of 13 for a female and 15 for a male.
  • Body Mass Index must be over 35 with at least one comorbidity.
  • Co-morbidities include sleep apnea, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes.
  • If you are under 21, you must have a Body Mass Index over 40 with at least one comorbidity.
  • A letter from your primary care physician stating that weight loss surgery is medically necessary.
  • Passes a psychological exam.
  • Documentation showing that the patient tried to manage their comorbidities with standard treatment but they were not successful.
  • The patient must complete and show documentation that he or she participated in a medically supervised weight loss program for 6 months and it happened within the last 12 months prior to surgery.
  • The patient must understand they will be required to change their diet and lifestyle after surgery.
  • Nutritional and psychological services must be available before and after surgery .
  • You Might Not Qualify for Weight Loss Surgery Coverage if:

    • Long-term steroid use
    • Inflammatory bowel disease, chronic pancreatitis, pregnancy, or non-compliance with medical treatment.
    • Psychological treatment that might interfere with post-operative compliance with diet and lifestyle.

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    Requirements For Bariatric Surgery Coverage

    Most insurance policies will require you to meet specific criteria before you are eligible for coverage. Each provider sets their own terms for this, so be sure to contact your insurance company and ask them about what requirements you must meet to qualify.

    In most cases, you will need to meet some or all of the following for insurance policies to cover some or all of your surgery and related expenses:

    • Be over the age of 18.
    • Been overweight or obese for a certain number of years.
    • Have a current BMI of 40+ or a BMI of 35+ with a comorbidity.
    • Been diagnosed by a medical professional with morbid obesity.
    • Be psychologically stable enough to undergo surgery and make the associated lifestyle changes.
    • Stop smoking.

    Criteria For Weight Loss Surgery Cost Coverage Through Medicaid

    In order for Medicaid to completely cover the cost of your surgery as well as the associated visits with your surgeon, you are going to need to meet all of the following criteria.

    • You will need to be over the age of 13 if youre a female or over the age of 15 if youre a male.
    • Your Body Mass Index must exceed 35 and you must have at least one comorbidity, such as high blood pressure, sleep apnea, high cholesterol, or diabetes.
    • If you are below the age of 21, you need to have a Body Mass Index exceeding 40 with at least one of the aforementioned comorbidities.
    • You must have a printed letter from your primary care physician recommending the medical necessity of weight loss surgery.
    • You need to pass a mental health exam showing that you are capable of adopting the necessary lifestyle changes for weight loss.
    • You must be able to provide documentation showing that you have tried to manage your weight and comorbidities using standard treatment, but that those attempts were unsuccessful.
    • You must complete a medically supervised program for weight loss spanning 6 months, and you need to show documentation that this weight loss program was attempted within the past 12 months before surgery.

    Some people will not qualify for weight loss surgery through Medicaid. If you have any of the following conditions or issues, you will not qualify.

    • Long-term use of steroids
    • Chronic pancreatitis, inflammatory bowel disease, or pregnancy
    • Non-compliance with medical treatments

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    Medicaid Coverage Of Recommended Treatment For Obesity

    Forty-five state Medicaid programs cover bariatric surgery with various restrictions. This is consistent with other sources reporting that 44 states covered gastric bypass surgery. We found only 10 states that explicitly covered weight-loss drugs under Medicaid the remaining states were either silent on the issue or excluded weight-loss drugs. This is understandable because under federal law, weight-loss drugs are one of the classes of drugs that Medicaid programs can exclude from coverage. However, our findings differ significantly from previous reports that found anywhere from 17 to 38 states covered at least one weight-loss drug under Medicaid. Most likely, these variations are due to differences in methodologyone report utilized a survey of Medicaid directors, another reported data provided by pharmaceutical companies, and the last did not report the methodology used. We might expect to find fewer states with weight-loss drug coverage from our strict document review.

    In contrast, the majority of Medicaid programs will cover bariatric surgery for their enrollees, with restrictions. Surgery is also less likely to be explicitly excluded under Medicaid. Between 1998 and 2002, the number of bariatric surgeries covered by Medicaid increased by more than 260%. During the same time period, surgeries financed by Medicare increased by more than 280%, while those by private insurers increased by more than 480%.


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