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Gastric Sleeve Cost Australia – A Breakdown of Gastric Sleeve Costs


The cost of gastric sleeve surgery in Australia will depend on a number of important factors, including the patient's insurance status and the surgeon's fees. At Central Coast Surgery, we strive to be as transparent as possible with our fees. For privately insured patients, the cost of gastric sleeve surgery in Australia is $3,500 AUD. For non-insured patients, the cost of gastric band surgery can exceed $20,000 AUD. 

Other patient costs incurred from gastric sleeve surgery or sleeve gastrectomy, include anaesthetist fees, pathology fees and surgical assistant fees. Patients will also have to make their own arrangements with their health fund with regards to the excess payable on surgery.


Gastric Sleeve Surgery – A Growing Industry

Gastric sleeve surgery has been performed in Australia for more than ten years. For more than a decade, gastric sleeve surgery has been aiding Australians in rapidly losing weight, changing their food consumption patterns, and radically transforming unhealthy lifestyle behaviours.

In 2018, the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed 67% of Australian adults were overweight or obese. More than 12.5 million people struggle with obesity in Australia, putting themselves at risk of severe lifestyle diseases including diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol levels, gall bladder disease, arthritis and fatty liver disease. 

Given that more than two-thirds of Australians are facing morbid obesity, the number of people considering weight loss surgery in 2020 is only increasing. Furthermore, bariatric surgery practices are less invasive and more accessible than other weight loss procedures, leading more people online to learn about the cost of Gastric Sleeve surgery in Australia.

This page will break down the gastric sleeve cost in Australia, the different types of bariatric surgery costs, the factors influencing gastric surgery costs, lap band surgery cost in Australia, and a transparent indication of gastric sleeve costs for those with insurance and those without insurance in Australia. 


Gastric Sleeve Surgery Purpose & Suitability

Gastric sleeve surgery is a type of surgery that specifically targets a goal of weight loss and lifestyle behavioural change. Gastric sleeve surgery is a bariatric procedure that permanently reduces the size of the stomach. Following partial removal of the stomach, the remainder of the stomach is sealed and closed with staples. Similarly to other types of bariatric procedures, gastric sleeve surgery aims to limit the amount of food one can consume in an effort to avoid excessive and dangerous weight gain. 

Weight loss surgery is typically recommended if:


• The patient has a very high body mass index (BMI).

• The patient has already seriously undertaken and attempted other weight loss methods.

• The patient is suffering from a condition that makes excessive weight loss and lifestyle change essential for their health.


Gastric sleeve surgery costs in Australia may vary from surgeon to surgeon, relying heavily on the scope of the procedure, the hospital, the surgical clinic, and whether or not the patient is privately insured or not. At Central Coast Surgery, we strive to be as transparent as possible with our gastric sleeve surgery costs. Those who are considered morbidly obese, in which their weight has the potential to be life-threatening if left untreated, may qualify for further Medicare covering than others. 


factors influencing the cost of gastric sleeve surgery in australia


Gastric Sleeve Surgery Cost Australia: What’s Involved?

When a patient decides to go ahead with weight loss surgery, we take them through a step by step process to ensure they are entirely aware of every aspect of the procedure. In the case of gastric sleeve costs, our Central Coast Surgery clinic will follow a process to work with a dietician, a surgeon, a psychologist and a nutrition plan. 

Patients who undergo weight loss surgery (and gastric sleeve surgery in particular) experience faster weight loss than with most other surgical and non-surgical options, with an expected weight loss of around 30% total body weight over a 12-month period.

It's important to consider what's inclusive of surgery fees and what may be excluded. At Central Coast Surgery, we work closely with each patient, and the following services are a part of our gastric sleeve surgery cost Australia inclusions:


• Initial consultation with the surgeon

• Pre-operative assessment with a specialist physician

• Surgical procedure

• Clinical psychologist consultation 

• Dietician consultations


what's included in the cost of gastric sleeve surgery?


Furthermore, if a patient requires further operations for complications within the first two years, as long as their health fund covers them, there will be no additional charges from our surgeon. 

The additional costs not included in our clinical fees include:


• Anaesthetist

• Surgical assistant

• Nutritional supplements 

• Pathology services


New Patients

For new patients, the first thing we will do is set you up with a specialist appointment with our bariatric surgeon. In Australia, Medicare states that a patient must have a current referral from a general practitioner or another specialist to qualify for that initial consultation rebate. 

In the case of a new patient, there are a number of steps that need to be taken to decrease the chance of complications, speed up the recovery and help to adjust to the new lifestyle of post-gastric sleeve surgery. Eating smaller portions, quitting smoking, educating themselves about healthy lifestyles, and following a dietary and exercise plan are all part of the pre-operative process. Following these steps can significantly aid the post-operative process and thus, decrease the chances of unnecessary additional surgery complications and costs. 


Types of Weight Loss Surgery

The type of weight loss or bariatric surgery can have a significant influence on how much the surgery will cost. Different surgeries require different approaches, operating times, procedures, and hospital stays. The three most common weight loss procedures include: 


types of weight loss surgery


Gastric Sleeve Surgery – Gastric sleeve surgery involves removing approximately 70-90% of the stomach, leaving behind a small pouch. Gastric sleeve surgery is a non-reversible laparoscopic procedure. The average operating time for a gastric sleeve procedure is 45-60 minutes, with an average hospital stay of 2-3 days. The follow up of a gastric sleeve surgery involves regular appointments every 1-2 months for the first six months, and then 3-6 monthly to review the progress. 

Gastric Bypass Surgery – Gastric bypass surgery involves the surgeon dividing the stomach into two sections and reconnecting the small intestine to the stomach’s smaller, upper pouch. Gastric bypass is a relatively invasive laparoscopic procedure, involving multiple areas of the abdomen, and essentially changing the normal processes of the body’s digestion. Gastric bypass surgery is typically reversible, takes roughly 60-90 minutes in theatre, and usually requires an average hospital stay of 2-4 days.

Gastric Band Surgery – Gastric band surgery, or lap band surgery, is a procedure in which an inflatable band is placed around the upper part of the stomach. This creates a small stomach pouch above the band, with the rest sitting below the band. Gastric band surgery is entirely reversible, can be adjusted, and will require eventual removal. The average operating time is 30-40 minutes, with an average hospital stay of one day (day surgery). 


Factors Influencing Gastric Sleeve Cost Australia

There are a few variables involved in determining gastric sleeve costs in Australia. The associated fees of gastric sleeve surgery cost Australia are made up of several components, including:


• Hospital Charges for Stay

• Hospital Charges for Operating Theatre

• Equipment Used During Operation, including:

• The gastric band itself or other weight loss surgery device

• Fees associated with the surgeon, anaesthetist and surgeon assistants


factors influencing gastric sleeve surgery cost


How Much Does Bariatric Surgery Cost?

At Central Coast surgery, our Gastric sleeve cost Australia prices will depend entirely on whether a patient has private health insurance or not. The cost of any procedure is discussed in the initial consultation with a written quotation. 

For weight loss surgery, including gastric band surgery, sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass surgery, insured patients will be out of pocket approximately $3,500 with Central Coast Surgery. 

Our clinic fees at Central Cost Surgery include the operation, follow-ups, dietician consultations, bariatric physician appointments, and psychologist advice. Revision from band to sleeve or sleeve to bypass will incur further charges.

The additional costs not included in our clinical fees are those that are not directly associated with Central Coast Surgery and entail:

• Anaesthetic out of pocket costs can be approximately $1,000. 

• Depending on how long it takes to complete the procedure, surgical assistance can cost about $250.

• Pathology services can cost around $200.


Surgery Risks & Complications Explained

Like all surgical procedures, gastric sleeve surgery comes with the risk of complication. Surgery risks include bleeding, infection, damage to other organs and pulmonary embolus. However, the risks associated with laparoscopic gastric sleeve surgery are extremely rare as the procedure is conducted as keyhole surgery and the risk associated with these types of procedures is very minimal. 

People with significant weight problems, in general, have a higher risk of complications during any surgery. While these complications are not very common, taking steps to reduce those risks can go a long way in speeding up recovery and minimising the chances of any additional post-operation costs.

The complication most specific to gastric sleeve surgery is leakage. Leakage refers to when the stomach staples fail to seal properly, and stomach contents leak into the abdominal cavity. Leakage is a very serious complication that only occurs in about 1% of patients. Leakage may increase the stay in a hospital and require a further operation.

Finally, failing to follow the general weight loss surgery protocol that is set out can lead to complications post-surgery that will increase the costs of the procedure and after-care. 

Good and long-lasting results are only achieved when the patient is well-informed, educated about the procedure, willing to make serious lifestyle changes, and is working with an experienced and multi-disciplinary team like Central Coast Surgery. 


Does Gastric Sleeve Surgery Cost the Same at All Clinics?

Depending on who you decide to engage with, gastric band or lap band surgery cost Australia can vary from practice to practice. Lap band surgery will also involve the management and after-care of the lap band, as well as frequent check-ups to ensure everything is operating smoothly. Lap band surgery cost Australia may or may not include lap band adjustment and removal fees, depending on the clinic and surgeon performing the procedure. 


How Much Does Gastric Band Surgery Cost at Central Coast Surgery?

At Central Coast Surgery, our costs between gastric sleeve and gastric band surgery don’t vary too much. Most of our weight loss bariatric procedures fall into relatively similar price brackets. However, the out-of-pocket expenses associated with gastric band surgery may be lower than gastric sleeve costs because the operating time is often shorter, and the procedure is usually completed as day surgery. 


why does weight loss surgery cost so much?

Gastric Sleeve Cost Without Insurance Australia

The costs of weight loss surgery, including gastric sleeves, gastric bands, and gastric bypasses will weigh heavily on insurance. Patients with an appropriate level of private health insurance cover will find that most hospital and equipment charges will incur a ‘no gap’ fee. The out of pocket expenses for those with insurance are related to professional and clinic fees charged by the surgeon, anaesthetist and the surgeon’s assistants.

For most weight loss surgeries, insured patients will be out of pocket about $3,500. These fees at Central Coast Surgery are roughly the same for gastric band, gastric sleeve, and gastric bypass procedures. This fee will cover everything from the surgery, to the follow-up appointments, dietician consultations, bariatric physician and psychologist advice. 

Insured patients will experience extra costs related to the anaesthetist, surgical assistant, nutritional supplements and pathology services. Given that these additional costs are independent additions and not associated with the clinic, they are not inclusive of what is covered from the clinic. 

For non-insured patients, weight loss surgery expenses can be overwhelming. The average gastric sleeve cost without insurance Australia is an approximately $20,000 procedure. This covers everything, from clinic fees to additional hospital costs. 

If you are NOT insured for bariatric or weight-loss surgery, you still have the option to either upgrade your level of health insurance so that you are covered or find a new insurer that will provide adequate cover. In most cases, an insurance company will apply a waiting period of 12 months for a patient to qualify for surgery. Furthermore, if you’re waiting to be approved for bariatric surgery, you can still set up a consultation with our clinic to discuss your options. 


How Much Does Gastric Band Removal Cost?

Lap band removal incurs no out-of-pocket fee if you are covered by private health insurance. However, there may be a small fee involved with lap or gastric band removal to cover the costs of the anaesthetist. If you are not insured, you may have to pay the full costs of lap band removal, which can vary from hospital to hospital.


Why Does Weight Loss Surgery Cost So Much?

Gastric sleeve costs and other weight loss procedure costs can be confronting. However, the reality is, bariatric surgery for weight loss covers a long-term process of weight loss and lifestyle change. The gastric sleeve costs Australia cover subsequent operations for complications and any issues with inadequate weight loss within the first two years of the initial surgery. 

The costs of bariatric surgery with Central Coast Surgery are as stated because they cover access to dieticians, clinical psychologists, experienced and exceptionally trained surgeons, and physician follow-ups. Furthermore, our research reveals that the cost of weight loss surgery is often recouped within the first two years from money saved on food and medication. 


How Can I Raise Money for Weight-loss Surgery?

Funds for weight loss surgery, whether it be for lap band, gastric sleeve, gastric bypass can be obtained from superannuation funds. In many cases, it can be claimed as a tax deduction. Individual financial advice should be sought.


Central Coast Surgery Gastric Sleeve Clinic

At the Central Coast Surgical Clinic, we do not wish to have the cost of surgery influence the type of weight loss surgery that you decide to have. If you have health insurance, the one-off up-front fee of $3,500 applies whether you choose to have lap band surgery, gastric sleeve surgery, gastric bypass or revisional surgery from one form to another. Without health insurance, it can cost up to about $20,000. Removal of lap bands are free of charge.

Central Coast Surgery is a nationally recognised clinic providing gastric sleeve surgery and weight loss procedures on the Central Coast and in Newcastle, Australia. The principal surgeon at Central Coast Weight Loss Surgery is Dr Ken Wong, a highly experienced surgeon specialising in keyhole surgeries. 

Our clinic works with each patient one on one to provide the best possible results and the weight loss progress they desire. Through a comprehensive multi-disciplinary approach, we can help to change your life for the better. In terms of gastric sleeve cost Australia, we strive to provide exceptional weight-loss procedures at cost-effective prices. Our weight loss clinic covers the coastline from Sydney, Newcastle, and the Central Coast. Get in touch to learn more about your initial consultation today.