Bariatric Surgery Cost in Washington

Bariatric Surgery in Washington

Bariatric surgery, a medical intervention designed to help individuals struggling with obesity achieve significant and sustained weight loss, has become an increasingly common solution for those seeking a healthier lifestyle.

However, with this potentially life-changing procedure comes the consideration of costs, which vary based on location, facility, and the specific type of surgery chosen.

A study reported that the median inpatient costs for bariatric surgery patients in Washington in the first year were about $25,000. Let’s find out the cost of baritric surgery in Washington. 

Cost of Bariatric Surgery in Washington

Bariatric Surgeon Gastric Sleeve Gastric Bypass Gastric Balloon Gastric Banding Removal
R. Andrew Bright, M.D. Not Mentioned

$27,780 – $33,806

Not Mentioned Not Mentioned
Judy Y. Chen-Meekin, M.D.

$27,466 – $33,379

Not Mentioned Not Mentioned
Amir Heydari, M.D.

Not Mentioned

Not Mentioned Not Mentioned Not Mentioned
Dr. Morris Washington, M.D. Not Mentioned

Not Mentioned

Not Mentioned Not Mentioned
Dr. Matthew Fitzer

$17,000 – $18,000

$19,000 Not Mentioned Not Mentioned
Myers, Wayne, D.O. Not Mentioned Not Mentioned Not Mentioned Not Mentioned

What Does the Cost Usually Include?

The cost of bariatric surgery in Washington typically covers a comprehensive range of services, ensuring that patients receive the necessary pre-operative assessments, the surgical procedure, and the essential post-operative care. Here is a breakdown of what the cost usually includes:

     Pre-operative assessments: Before undergoing bariatric surgery, patients typically undergo a series of evaluations to determine their eligibility and ensure they are physically and mentally prepared for the procedure. These assessments may include consultations with healthcare professionals, nutritional counseling, psychological evaluations, and various medical tests.

     Surgical procedure costs: The most significant portion of the overall cost covers the surgical procedure itself. The type of bariatric surgery chosen – whether it’s gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, or adjustable gastric band – significantly influences the cost. Surgeon fees, operating room charges, anesthesia fees, and any necessary medical equipment are encompassed in this category.

     Hospital or facility fees: Using a hospital or surgical facility contributes to the overall cost. The fees associated with the facility include operating rooms, recovery rooms, and any necessary medical supplies or equipment during the surgery.

     Post-operative care: Bariatric surgery requires thorough post-operative care to ensure patients recover and adapt to their new lifestyle. The Washington University bariatric surgery program emphasizes the importance of ongoing support and lifestyle changes to ensure the long-term success of the surgery.

     Miscellaneous costs: Various miscellaneous expenses, such as medications, post-operative garments, and other supplies required during the recovery period, may be included in the overall price.

Do Washington Bariatric Surgeons Include Insurance?

In Washington, whether bariatric surgeons include insurance coverage in their services can depend on several factors, including the specific insurance plan, the surgeon’s practice, and the type of bariatric procedure chosen. Insurance coverage for bariatric surgery can be complex and may vary from one provider to another.

In Washington, the coverage of bariatric surgery by insurance can vary depending on the specific insurance plan, the surgeon’s practice, and the type of bariatric procedure chosen. The Washington State Health Care Authority is currently reviewing its coverage policy for bariatric surgery, assessing the evidence on the clinical benefits and cost-effectiveness of including those defined by the level of obesity, age, and levels of comorbidity.

Additionally, the agency covers medically necessary bariatric surgery for eligible clients, and the coverage is evaluated based on the criteria of medical necessity, safety, effectiveness, and non-experimentality

     Insurance coverage eligibility: Some insurance plans cover bariatric surgery, but eligibility criteria often include a minimum Body Mass Index (BMI) requirement and documentation of previous attempts at weight loss through diet and exercise.

     In-network vs. out-of-network providers: The choice of a bariatric surgeon can impact insurance coverage. Many insurance plans have a network of preferred providers, and opting for an in-network surgeon may result in higher coverage. Out-of-network providers may be covered to a lesser extent, leading to increased out-of-pocket expenses for the patient.

     Pre-authorization requirements: Insurance providers may require pre-authorization for bariatric surgery, involving a detailed review of the patient’s medical history, documentation of previous weight loss attempts, and other specific criteria. 

Bariatric Surgery FAQs

Bariatric surgery is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It is typically recommended for individuals with a BMI of 40 or higher or those with a BMI of 35 or higher with obesity-related health issues. However, each case is unique, and a thorough evaluation by healthcare professionals is essential to determine suitability.

Like any surgical procedure, bariatric surgery carries risks and potential complications. These may include infection, bleeding, adverse reactions to anesthesia, and, in rare cases, long-term nutritional deficiencies. Prospective patients should discuss these risks with their surgeon and weigh them against the potential benefits.


Navigating the costs of bariatric surgery in Washington involves a comprehensive understanding of what the price typically includes, insurance coverage considerations, and answers to frequently asked questions.

Prospective patients should communicate openly with healthcare professionals, thoroughly review their insurance policies, and educate themselves on the potential risks and benefits of bariatric surgery to make informed decisions on their journey toward a healthier life.