What are the costs of Bariatric (weight loss) surgery?

Bariatric surgery has been conclusively shown to increase life expectancy and quality of life for patients suffering with morbid obesity. While bariatric surgery may seem costly, it is a positive investment for the majority of patients as it often improves employment options, improves cash flow through reduced food bills and decreases other medical costs.

Bariatric Surgery Costs: Explained

Most patients having surgery need to contribute towards the cost of their treatment; in public hospitals these costs are covered by the State Government.

The majority of specialist treatments occur in the private system – funded by private insurance, Medicare payments and patient payments. Private insurance covers the majority of costs associated with treatment (hospital costs) but will usually only contribute a couple of hundred dollars per operation to the Doctor/Surgeon providing the treatment.

How much will bariatric surgery cost me?

Insured Patients

Please check with your health insurance provider to ensure that you are eligible. Item numbers for the main Bariatric Surgery procedures are:

  • Sleeve Gastrectomy – 31575
  • Gastric Bypass – 31572
  • Gastric Band – 31569

Insured patients have a choice regarding what treatment they receive, who treats them, and how long they have to wait until they are admitted to hospital for treatment. Health insurance covers the cost of hospital admission and all of the items used during the hospital stay. Your procedure will be billed directly to the health fund and Medicare for the surgery, on your behalf.

Bariatric surgery patients are charged a Clinic Fee – this is an ‘out of pocket’ cost which is not claimable via health funds or Medicare. The clinic fee contributes towards the expenses of running our multidisciplinary clinic to help manage your health and obesity as a chronic disease, allowing us to provide follow-up care without charging above the Medicare fee for up to 3 years after surgery.

Clinic Fee - from $5,500

Our Clinic Fee includes:

  • Access to our pre-op digital platform for important information and updates before and after your surgery
  • Bulk-billed follow-up appointments with our specialist medical team for the duration of your clinic fee
  • Two Dietitian appointments
  • A Nutrition Pack consisting of:
    • ‘Portion Perfection’ bariatric bowl and plate, designed to help you with portion control at meal times.
    • One month’s supply of bariatric multivitamins
    • A copy of ‘Your Complete Guide to Nutrition for Weight Loss Surgery’ by Sally Johnston
  • Enrollment in the Fresh Start online support, education and coaching program for two years post-surgery.

Anaesthetist - from $1,500

You will be contacted by the Anaesthetist before surgery – they will provide you with a quote for your procedure and how to arrange payment.

Hospital Charges - $0

Contact your health insurance provider to determine your hospital excess cost, payable ahead of your surgery date.

Assistant Surgeon - $0

Your procedure will require an Assistant Surgeon. The Assistant Surgeon fee is covered by your health fund and Medicare.

Uninsured Patients

Uninsured patients will have to cover all of the costs associated with their hospital admission. It is generally impossible to determine an exact figure for the total cost of surgery – unforeseen events for example additional necessary treatment will incur further costs. Hospital fees cover theatre costs, theatre equipment hire, bed costs, or admission to ICU (if required). Hospitals in NSW will provide quotes to patients before admission, and expect an up-front payment on or before the day of admission for the quoted amount.

Bariatric surgery patients are charged a Clinic Fee – this is an ‘out of pocket’ cost which is not claimable via Medicare. The clinic fee contributes towards the expenses of running our multidisciplinary clinic to help manage your health and obesity as a chronic disease, allowing us to provide follow-up care without charging above the Medicare fee for up to 3 years after surgery.

Ways to Pay for Bariatric Surgery

We try to make bariatric surgery as streamlined and accessible as possible for our patients and offer multiple ways to complete payment ahead of their planned surgery date. Here are some payment options to consider:

Payment Plans

Upper GI Surgery offers payment plans for our patients. Patients can pay any amount as often as they wish before their surgery date (using credit card, debit card or bank transfer) provided the total amount due is paid in full one week before surgery.

Superannuation ‘Early Access’

Depending on your own personal circumstances, we can assist you in accessing early release of super for surgery by providing a letter by your Surgeon. Accessing your Super Fund for surgery usually takes 2-4 weeks and these claims are made yourself through the ATO.

Layby Surgery

We offer our patients the option of Layby Surgery which allows our patients to budget, plan and pay ahead for their procedure. For more information about paying for bariatric surgery using Layby Surgery click here.

Clinic Fee - from $5,500

Our Clinic Fee includes:

  • Access to our pre-op digital platform for important information and updates before and after your surgery
  • Bulk-billed follow-up appointments with our specialist medical team for the duration of your clinic fee
  • Two Dietitian appointments
  • A Nutrition Pack consisting of:
    • ‘Portion Perfection’ bariatric bowl and plate, designed to help you with portion control at meal times.
    • One month’s supply of bariatric multivitamins
    • A copy of ‘Your Complete Guide to Nutrition for Weight Loss Surgery’ by Sally Johnston
  • Enrollment in the Fresh Start online support, education and coaching program for two years post-surgery.

Anaesthetist - from $1,500

You will be contacted by the Anaesthetist before surgery – they will provide you with a quote for your procedure and how to arrange payment.

Hospital Charges - from $10,000

You will be contacted by the hospital before surgery – they will provide you with a quote for your procedure and how to arrange payment.

Assistant Surgeon - $500

Your procedure will require an Assistant Surgeon – they will contact you to arrange payment of this fee.

Covering the Costs of Bariatric Surgery and Aftercare

In our practice we have 3 Surgeons, a Bariatric Care Specialist, 2 Nurses, 4 Admin staff, a Dietitian and Psychologist, as well as the general expenses involved in running a complex multidisciplinary clinic. The bulk of the fees associated with the services we provide are to cover these expenses and wages.

Regardless of whether a medical service is provided in the public or private system, the overall actual costs are reasonably similar. Many treatments are not offered in public hospitals, so patients choose to use the private health system.

Your next step…

Your consultation with our Bariatric Care Specialist or Bariatric Surgeon is your next step. It is an opportunity for you to learn how weight loss surgery works, what type of obesity treatment is right for you, and to ask any questions you may have. They can provide an individualised and detailed cost breakdown for your surgery.

Book your first consultation with our Bariatric Care Specialist or one of the Bariatric Surgeons today.

Find out more about our Patient Journey or your First Consultation. 

FAQs

How much is the first consultation?

Your first consultation can be with the Bariatric Care Specialist or with one of the Bariatric Surgeons, though each carries a different fee. Out of pocket fees for the first consultation for bariatric surgery are as follows:

  • Dr Jennifer Matthei (Bariatric Care Specialist) – $135* after Medicare
  • A/Prof Michael Talbot (Surgeon) – $270* after Medicare
  • Dr Gary Yee (Surgeon) – $170* after Medicare
  • Dr Jason Maani (Surgeon) – $170* after Medicare

* Please note these fees are subject to Medicare rebate. Patients are required to pay the full fee on the day of their first appointment, and Medicare will administer the rebate within 2 – 3 working days. Contact our practice for more information.

You can book your appointment using our online booking system, or call the practice (02) 9553 1120 to make an appointment with the specialist or one of the bariatric surgeons.

Am I a candidate for bariatric surgery?

People suitable for bariatric surgery: 

  • BMI greater than 40
  •  BMI greater than 30–35, with medical complications
  •  No hormonal cause for obesity
  •  Obesity present for at least five years and persisted despite adequate attempts with other weight loss measures
  •  No alcohol or drug abuse
  •  Absence of major, untreated psychiatric conditions
  •  Ability to comply with long-term vitamin supplements and follow-up after surgery
  •  Actively supportive GP

To find out more visit Am I a Candidate? 

What private health funds do you accept?
We accept all private health funds.
Do you offer payment plans?

Payment Plans

Upper GI Surgery offers payment plans for our patients. Patients can pay any amount as often as they wish before their surgery date (using credit card, debit card or bank transfer) as long as the total amount due is paid in full one week before surgery.

Layby Surgery

We offer our patients the option of Layby Surgery which allows patients to budget, plan and pay ahead for their procedure. For more information about paying for bariatric surgery using Layby Surgery click here.

Sign up to receive our free Bariatric Surgery Guide

Everything you need to know, including our clinic cost, procedure options and much more.