Health insurance pays to cover medically necessary procedures and some types of preventative care. The primary purpose of health insurance is to help people pay for expenses that they could not cover themselves for procedures that would cause harm if not completed. In other words, if a procedure is not medically necessary and completing it will not reduce the chance of a health problem in the future, the insurance company will not cover it.
In the case of cosmetic surgery, most cosmetic procedures will not be covered by insurance. In some cases, however, insurance may pay for cosmetic surgeries that are related to serious medical conditions. For example, reconstructive surgery after an accident would be deemed medically necessary even if the issue was not life-threatening.
If a cosmetic procedure like plastic surgery is deemed medically necessary, the insurance company may be able to provide coverage for it. The doctor will need to provide proof of medical necessity to the insurance company, which will then review the situation and determine if the procedure will be covered.
What is a Tummy Tuck?
People who have lots of excess skin and flesh in their abdominal area may wish to get rid of it. These loose folds of skin are common in women who have had children, especially by cesarean section. They are also common in individuals who have undergone sudden and substantial weight loss.
A tummy tuck corrects this problem by removing excess skin and tightening it across the abdomen. This improves the overall appearance of the area and can help prevent certain medical conditions from arising. For example, some people may develop muscle problems or poor posture due to the excess skin. Over time, this muscle weakness can cause further issues, such as digestive problems or poor bladder control.
For most people, however, a tummy tuck is a purely cosmetic procedure designed to help improve body image and increase physical attractiveness. Although it may help the patient’s self-esteem, these applications are not usually considered medically necessary.
Will Health Insurance Cover a Tummy Tuck?
When considering a tummy tuck, it’s important to decide exactly why you need one and whether that will help you qualify for insurance payments. Speak with your doctor about your concerns and see if they can assist you. For example, if you’re having muscle control issues, there may be other treatments that can help. The insurance company may require you to exhaust these possibilities before pursuing more invasive surgical treatments.
If your procedure is determined to be medically necessary, the doctor will need to submit paperwork to the insurance company. The more thorough this paperwork, the better your chances of having the procedure approved by your insurance. Be aware that the approval process takes time, and your insurance company may still deny the claim even if the doctor believes the procedure to be medically necessary.
If you cannot get your health insurance company to pay for your procedure, you will need to find an alternative way to fund it. Speak with your doctor to see if there are any options available for financing. Some doctors offices will take installment plans for non-emergency treatments, but most won’t. You may need to take out a private loan or credit card if the surgeon’s office will not accept payment plans.
How to Fund a Tummy Tuck if Insurance Won’t Pay for It
One option that may be available to you is to start your own private funding campaign through a program like ChipIn or a similar website. These allow you to solicit friends, family and people on the Internet for donations. People often use this to fund medical expenses for themselves or their pets, and these campaigns are often very successful. Of course, you may not be able to get enough success from this to fund your surgery, but it’s an option worth considering if there is no other way to obtain funding.
Once all funding options have been exhausted, it’s time to carefully consider your priorities. If you believe that the surgery is absolutely necessary, you will need to make a savings plan and find a way to put aside enough money to cover the costs of your procedure.
Otherwise, it might be a good idea to discuss your options with your doctor and see if there are any other ways to tighten the skin and muscles of your abdomen without surgery so that you can get the results you want without incurring an expensive medical bill. Exercises and homoepathic treatments can be very effective in toning, strengthening and tightening this area.