Covering the Cost of Surgery
New year, new you, right? If you’ve decided that 2015 is the year you’ll make the leap and have eyelid surgery, rhinoplasty, or a facelift, there are a few things to think about first. One of those things is how you’ll cover the cost of the procedure. While some patients might be able to tap into their savings account and come up with the full fee, without issue, that’s not the case for everyone. In some rare cases, insurance might cover the cost of a procedure, especially if it’s performed for medical reasons, such as a rhinoplasty to fix a breathing issue or eyelid surgery to correct a vision problem.
Know what payments you’re responsible for, when you’ll have to pay them and what your options are before the surgery, so that you don’t end up feeling confused or stressed when it’s all over.
When Do You Pay?
It’s important to know when your payments for the procedure are due. Many surgeons don’t bill you a few weeks or months after your surgery. Instead, you’ll be expected to pay upfront for the procedure. Typically, you’ll make an initial deposit, which is often non-refundable. The deposit secures a date and time for your surgery and is often used to cover the cost of scheduling and booking the surgical room. Generally, the rest of your payment is due a week or two before your procedure.
If you don’t have the full amount of the surgery’s cost set aside in savings or don’t want to dip into your savings to pay for your procedure, a few financing options are available. As with any type of credit, it’s a good idea to think long and hard before deciding to finance your plastic surgery. While using your credit card, opening a new credit card or obtaining another type of loan does mean you pay less up front and can spread your payments out over the long term, it also means that you end up paying more in the long run in the form of interest.
Many practices take major credit cards or participate in a medical financing program, such as CareCredit. You can also work with your bank and get a personal loan, then pay the practice in cash and repay the bank.
Things to Think About
Before financing your surgery, there are a few things to think about. Interest is a big concern. Depending on the amount of interest you’re charged, you can end up paying back a lot more than the original cost of surgery. Some options offer low interest rates or no interest rates for a set amount of time. If you pay the full amount back within that time, you’re off the hook when it comes to interest. But, if you are unable to pay in full before the special rate expires, you might find yourself paying back double digit interest rates.
Your credit also plays a part in determining what type of financing you can obtain and the type of interest you’re offered. The better your credit, the better the deal you’ll receive. If your credit isn’t so great, there’s also the possibility that you’ll be turned down for a loan or financing.
Another thing to consider before applying for financing to pay for surgery is any other financial decisions you’ll be making in the coming year. If your goal is to apply for a mortgage or a car loan, you might want to hold off on scheduling your surgery or applying for a loan until you’ve reached those goals. You don’t want your plastic surgery loan to interfere with your ability to buy a house in 2015.
What If You Change Your Mind?
Deciding to have a facelift or other plastic surgery procedure is taking a big step. Even after consulting with a surgeon, weighing the pros and cons, and taking the initial steps to schedule the surgery, you might decide that it’s not the right choice for you.
In that case, it’s important to know what your surgeon’s refund policy is. Usually, it depends on when you change your mind and decide to cancel the surgery. The earlier the better. For example, if you cancel a month before the procedure, you’ll only lose out on the initial deposit. But, if you wait until two weeks before the surgery, you might lose 25 percent of the cost of the procedure. If you cancel a week before your scheduled surgery, you might still have to pay half of the surgical fee. If you cancel the day before or the day of, you might need to pay for the procedure in full.
Having confidence in the surgeon who will perform the procedure can help reduce the chances that you’ll want to back out less than two weeks in advance. Your consultation is the time to ask any questions and to gain confidence about the surgery and about the surgeon you’ll be working with. It’s a time to ask any and all questions, and during it, Dr. Kyle Choe, a facial plastic surgeon in Virginia Beach, will be able to answer them. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Choe, 757.389.5850 today.