Patient information

Our costs

Weight loss surgery can be viewed as being very expensive, and is often incorrectly perceived as a being cosmetic procedure. But losing weight sustainably over a long time can be lifesaving. The costs for any weight loss surgery should, therefore, be affordable. We provide high quality care, at accessible prices, for those in need, and we accept patients with and without insurance.

 

Why is there a gap? 

While we endeavour to keep our prices as affordable as possible, there are still out of pocket costs. Our prices reflect the expertise and quality of Dr Puhalla’s services, and his team. 

With this in mind, we understand that the cost of private health care without insurance can be expensive. Therefore, we can assist you with an application to the ATO for early release of your superannuation on compassionate grounds. For more information, visit the ATO’s website

Consultations

Initial consultation: $250

Follow up consultation: $90  

Medicare rebate: $76

Medicare rebate: $38

 

A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required to secure your initial consultation booking. Payment methods include direct deposit or credit card (over the phone available). 

You will need a GP referral addressed to Dr Puhalla to claim your Medicare rebates.  Follow up appointments after surgery have no charge within the first referral period.  After this, there may be a small out of pocket cost.

Weight Loss Surgery Costs

Your surgery will have three fee components – surgeon, anaesthetist and hospital fees. These fees are separate accounts, and are dependent on the procedure type.

Surgeon Fees

Upon booking your surgery, you will be given an Informed Financial Consent, which details the surgeon’s fees. This fee will include the surgeon’s fees for MBS item numbered procedures, surgical assistant fees and in-hospital visits. An exact quote cannot be provided before booking your surgery, as the exact procedure and item numbers need to be determined prior to issuing a quote. Medicare and health fund rebates are available on these fees, and are listed on the IFC. 

Please see approximate fees and Medicare rebates below. If you have private health insurance and are covered for the surgery item numbers, there are additional rebates available. Health fund rebates are not listed below, as they vary from fund to fund. If you would like to find out what the health fund rebates are before you book your surgery, please contact your health fund. 

ProcedureItem NumbersUp-Front FeesMedicare RebatesOut-of-Pocket Costs
Sleeve gastrectomy31575$4,400$800 approx.$3,600
Single anastomosis gastric bypass31578, 30473$5,500$850 approx.$4,600
Roux-en-y gastric bypass31572, 30473$5,500$850 approx.$4,600
Loop duodenal switch31581, 30473$6,400$1,000 approx.$5,400
Revision surgery31584, 31585$6,500 – $8,000Start at $800 approx.Varies

Placement of a minimiser ring costs $500. As there is no MBS item number for this, there is no Medicare rebate available.

Please note, these prices are approximate fees only, and are subject to change without notice. If you require additional procedures, such as a hiatus hernia repair (31468) or division of adhesions (30724), there will be additional fees and rebates. 

As revision surgery is complex and can vary greatly in the way it is performed, costs cannot be provided until after your consultation with Dr Puhalla. Depending on the surgery, revision procedures typically cost between $6,500 to $8,000, with Medicare rebates starting at around $800.

Anaesthetic Fees

Anaesthetic fees are time-based, therefore fees provided before surgery are estimates only. The fee may vary according to the length and complexity of your surgery, your physical status and age. In the event where your surgery time goes above the estimated duration, there may be additional fees. 

If you have private health insurance and are covered for weight loss surgery, fees vary depending on your health fund, the anaesthetist and their billing arrangements. Up-front costs may vary. Some anaesthetists charge a gap payment of around $500 and bill your health fund for the rest of the cost. Some charge the full up-front cost, varying between $1300 to $2500, and you claim rebates back after surgery. The maximum out of pocket is typically around $750 to $1000. 

If you do not have private health insurance, fees typically vary between $1300 to $2500, with Medicare rebates available.

Hospital Fees

The hospital fee will vary greatly if you have or do not have private health insurance.

If you have private health insurance and are covered for weight loss surgery, you will only have to pay your policy excess or co-payment to the hospital on the day of admission. This is typically around $250 to $500. If you are unsure of your coverage and/or excess or co-payment, please contact your health fund. Most health funds make excesses payable once during a calendar year, so if you have already been admitted to hospital in the same year, you may not have to pay anything more to the hospital on admission.

If you do not have private health insurance, you are liable for the entire hospital cost. These fees typically start at around $13,900 for theatre costs and two nights accommodation, however they can be more expensive for additional or more complex procedures, or if you require a longer stay in hospital. Unfortunately, there are no Medicare rebates available for the hospital fee, however, you may be able to apply to the ATO for early access to your superannuation fund to pay for surgery costs.

Other Fees

You may have other fees associated with your procedure, including pharmacy, pathology or radiology fees. These are separate costs that are payable to the provider. If you receive an account for any of these services, please contact the organisation with any queries. Please note, these costs cannot be quoted for. 

Other costs to consider throughout the process may include dietitian fees and psychologist fees, as well as any other necessary specialist or doctor involvement. For allied health fees, you may be eligible for Medicare rebates by obtaining a care plan from your GP. 

Intra-gastric Balloon Fees

Medicare does not consider the balloon a medical procedure, and therefore does not offer any rebates on the fees for the procedure. This means that private health funds also do not cover the costs or offer any rebates for the procedure.

Total costs for the balloon are approximately $6,700. This includes doctor’s fees, anaesthetist fees, and hospital fees for the insertion and removal of the balloon, as well as dietitian fees. As these fees are payable to the different service providers for the procedures, they are subject to change without notice. 

Upon confirmation of your booking, exact quotes will be obtained and confirmed. 

Early Superannuation Access

You may be able to apply to the Australian Taxation Office for early access of your superannuation to fund your surgery. We can assist you with the application, however there are a few things you should do before beginning the process. 

  1. Contact your super fund and ask if they allow early release of super funds. Most funds do, however it is advised that you check beforehand. 
  2. Ensure you have access to your online MyGov and ATO accounts. You must submit the application through these online portals. 
  3. Talk to your GP about your plan to apply for early super release. They will need to complete a copy of a report for your application, and therefore it is important to advise them of your needs. 

 

We will provide you with detailed instructions on how to apply, as well as supply the necessary evidence to support your application, however it is your responsibility to submit the application and monitor its progress. The application and release of funds will require adequate time to be approved, so keep this in mind when planning your surgery. More information can be found on the ATO website under “Early access to your super”. 

 

General Surgery Costs

General surgery procedures also have three fee components – surgeon, anaesthetist and hospital fees.

Depending on the procedure, surgeon fees for general surgical procedures are typically those recommended by the Australian Medical Association (AMA). Medicare and health fund rebates are available and will vary depending on the MBS item numbers used for your surgery. 

Anaesthetic fees will vary depending on your procedure and its duration. More information will be available from your anaesthetist, which will be advised at the time of booking your surgery. 

If you have private health insurance and are covered for the MBS item numbers of your surgery, hospital costs will be covered by your health fund, with only your excess or co-payment payable to the hospital on admission. It is recommended that you contact your health fund to confirm your coverage and excess/co-payment before your surgery. 

If you do not have private health insurance, a quote will be obtained from the hospital prior to your surgery. Please note, the cost of having surgery in private hospitals without insurance can be expensive, however, we will do our best to minimise this cost as much as possible. 

If you would like more information about surgery costs, please do not hesitate to contact our office


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