Bariatric surgery is now a common tool in the fight against obesity. Over 65% of all Australian adults and 25% of all Australian children are in the overweight to obese category. These numbers point to a chronic epidemic that needs long term solutions, not quick fixes. Weight loss surgery has been proven to be a viable, long term alternative for those struggling with their weight. Studies also proves its long term success.
However, weight loss surgery is not as simple as booking in a time, and there are several steps that need to be looked at and considered. People researching this type of surgery have many questions. We have answered some of the more frequently asked questions in order to give you a good understanding of what is involved in your decision making for Bariatric surgery.
Strict guidelines for obesity surgery have been set out by obesity surgical societies and the National Institutes of Health. This is to ensure the safety of any bariatric procedure.
Patients must also have:
Body Mass Calculation uses a person's height and weight.
The formula is BMI = kg/m2 where kg is a person's weight in kilograms and m2 is their height in metres squared.
A BMI of 25.0 or more is overweight, while the healthy range is 18.5 to 24.9
Weight 140 kgs
Height 1.70 metres
Square metre of height (1.70 x 1.70) 2.89
BMI = 48
|With medical insurance||$8,000|
|Without medical insurance||$23,000|
|Possibility of Superannuation access||Yes*|
The costs of having weight loss surgery are made up from a number of sources including:
With a higher level of insurance cover, most hospital and equipment charges will be covered with no out of pocket (depending on your insurance arrangements, there may be an excess to pay). The out of pocket expenses for insured patients relate mostly to professional/clinic fees charged by the surgeon, anaesthetist and the Allied Health & Service assistant.
You should make enquiries with your insurance company to make sure you are covered for bariatric procedures:
Gastric Sleeve: Item No. 31575
Gastric Bypass: Item No. 31572
Gastric Banding: Item No. 31569
An example of an average patient’s success would be:
A person who is 172cm tall and weighs 125kg (BMI 42) has an excess weight of 51kg (based on using a BMI of 25 being an ideal weight of 74kg) would expect to lose:
Any surgery comes with a degree of risk. These should be discussed with your bariatric surgeon in the initial consultation. Complications are minimised when the advice from your doctor and support staff are adhered to.
Risks and complications associated with bariatric surgery include:
On the basis of compassionate medical grounds, you can apply for early release of superannuation funds to pay for weight loss surgery for yourself, your partner or your child (must be under the same roof). There are several forms to fill in and submit to the ATO so the first thing to do is make an appointment with your Bariatric Surgeon as they will be the ones to sign off on your application.
We prefer to use a third party entitled supercare to expedite the process. This will incur a fee.
*Private health insurance is still required for gastric sleeves and bypass surgeries
50% of patients can put a small amount of weight back on. Do not be alarmed. This is as little as 5%. This may happen after a stabilisation period of 18 months to 2 year period. The long terms studies (10 years+) show most weight loss surgery patients are able to achieve and maintain significant weight loss.
Have more questions about weight loss surgery? Get in touch with our team and we will be happy to answer any questions that you have.