What Insurance Companies Cover Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery is one of the most popular and sought-after procedures in America today. This surgery, which is also known as weight-loss surgery, helps people who are obese lose weight and improve their health.

But what happens if you have a medical emergency while you’re recovering from bariatric surgery? What coverage does your insurance company provide? In this article, we will explore what insurance companies cover when it comes to bariatric surgery and how to find out more about your specific policy. We will also provide you with tips on what to do if you have questions about coverage.

What is Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery, also known as weight-loss surgery or bariatric surgery, is a surgical procedure used to reduce or remove excessive amounts of body weight. It is most commonly performed on people who are overweight or obese. Bariatric surgery can help you lose weight and improve your health.

There are two main types of bariatric surgery: gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy. Gastric bypass surgeries remove part of the stomach and connect the small intestine to the rest of the small intestine so that food cannot reach the distended stomach. This reduces the amount of calories eaten and leads to weight loss. Sleeve gastrectomy removes all of the stomach except for a small upper portion called the great pouch. This also leads to reduced calorie intake and weight loss.

Many insurance companies cover bariatric surgery. However, not all procedures are covered by every company. You may need to check with your specific insurance company to see if it covers bariatric surgery.

Types of Bariatric Surgery

There are a few different types of bariatric surgery, each with its own benefits and drawbacks. Here is a breakdown of the most popular types of bariatric surgery:

1. Laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB) – This type of surgery uses small incisions to insert the band around the stomach. This procedure is often done as an outpatient and has been shown to be very effective in helping people lose weight and maintain it off over time.

2. Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) – This type of surgery removes much of the stomach, giving the patient a smaller “ pouch” to eat from. The surgery is performed through several small incisions on either side of the navel and can result in quicker weight loss than other procedures. However, RYGB may not be as successful at maintaining weight loss over time, and patients may experience some health complications related to having a reduced stomach size, such as constipation or intestinal blockages.

3. Biliopancreatic diversion (BPD) – In this procedure, part of the small intestine is removed and diverted elsewhere in order to reduce the size of the stomach. Like RYGB, BPD may be more successful at achieving rapid weight loss but may also require more frequent meals and be more difficult to keep off long-term due to its propensity for regaining lost weight over time.

How Much Does Bariatric Surgery Cost?

There is no one answer to this question as the cost of bariatric surgery can vary based on the type of procedure performed, the hospital where it is performed, and the insurance company. However, on average, general anesthesia for gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy procedures ranges from $2,000 to $5,000 per hour.

Additionally, some surgeons may require postoperative follow-up visits that can cost up to $1,000 per visit. On average, total costs for a bariatric surgical procedure range from $14,000 to $44,000.

What Insurance Companies Cover Bariatric Surgery?

Some insurance companies may cover bariatric surgery, while others may not. To find out if your insurance company covers the procedure, contact them directly. If your policy does not cover the surgery, you may be able to get coverage through a health insurance exchange or through Medicare. You should also check with your employer to see if they offer coverage for bariatric surgery.


After reading this article, you will know a bit more about what insurance companies cover bariatric surgery and what factors are typically taken into account when making that decision. Hopefully, this information will help you better understand your options and make an informed decision about whether or not to undergo surgery.

Remember that no two patients are alike, so the coverage offered by different insurance companies may vary slightly. If you have any questions about what is covered by your particular policy, don’t hesitate to ask your doctor or healthcare provider.