Bakerchi, welcome to the team. You will find us to be fun loving, and very supportive. So ask your questions, and join in the discussions. We are happy to have you!!!
I was self-pay, so I didn't have to go through an approval process. I did have some tests done, including the psych eval. I believe that part would be more individualized than the other test, so really don't have any comments on it.
You have been given good information by the people that responded, and you will probably receive information from other people as well.
We discuss things in the monthly chat, and would love for you to join us there. I'm sure you will find the answers to most of your questions. We have people in all stages of wt loss surgery, and we are all willing to help and encouarge each other.
I have BCBS, and it took me 6 months to get through the approval process. I had to do a six month diet, attend at least to support group meetings, provided a five year weight history from my family doctor,which showed that I had been overweight in those last five years, to make sure I wasn't trying to get the surgery as a quick fix. I had to list every diet I ever tried. The psych eval, was just a lot of questions about if being overweight has made you look differently at yourself, like activities you won't do because of the weight, etc. Once my doctor received the approval from BCBS, which was in a few days after the doctor submitted all the necessary paperwork, I was scheduled for surgery 3 weeks later, I took the first available opening he had. It's like Linda said, it really just depends on your insurance company, because they are all different. Good luck!
BAKERCHI, I was self-pay so my process was extremely abbreviated compared to what the insurance companies require. I think you will find a lot depends on your particular insurance requirements plus it seems there are almost as many approaches to approval as there are doctors. I know their are a couple of big companies that have a long, complicated processes and several people on this site have shared similar experiences. I'm sure others will chime in with more specifics.
In my case, I was required to have some tests to assure my heart was in good shape, have a one-hour visit with a psychologist (I don't remember the questions, but it was a chat, not a questionnaire or anything like that), a visit with the nutritionist and of course a couple of consultations with the surgeon. Then as soon as I coughed up the dough, surgery was scheduled. Because I was self pay I could have gotten through my process and gone to surgery in as little as 4-6 weeks, I delayed surgery for a little while because of some scheduling issues in my personal life, but I went from first visit to surgery in less than three months. If insurance companies are involved it can take 6-12 months or even longer.
There is no pat answer to your question, but I'm sure others on this site will be able to help. Your best bet will probably be to research your insurance company requirements, pick a potential surgeon and have a consultation. Most surgeons also have support groups you can attend and orientation sessions that will give you information specific to that particular surgeon.
Good luck with your research and decision-making process. Drop by our April Chat to get a better feel for this group and the things we discuss. We're a friendly, chatty and helpful crowd.
"The longer I live the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude to me is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than success, than what others think, or say, or do. I am convinced that life is ten percent what happens to me and ninety percent how I react to it." Chuck Swindoll
I am looking into the sleeve procedure and was hoping to get information on what the approval process looks like.. what do they ask.. what is the psych eval like.. what do they look for in order to grant approval?
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