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UnitedHealthcare Health Insurance

Posted Jun 21 2010 10:32am

Two of the country’s largest health insurance companies, UnitedHealthcare health insurance and Aetna have recently agreed to cover the $16,000-$25,000 procedure to treat obesity called laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy.  This is according to the article “Insurers Divided Over Experimental Stomach Surgery to Treat Obesity” by Matthew Sturdevant on articles.courant.com.

This is big news for those seeking this type of surgery and may affect their decision when they are finding health insurance .  The procedure basically makes the stomach smaller that gets full quicker because it’s only 15% of its original size.  This is becoming a popular method to treat obesity and the country’s growing of residents with diabetes.  The sleeve gastrectomy does not actually use a sleeve.  The procedure gets its name from the shape the stomach takes on after the procedure.  The stomach normally looks like a kidney bean and after the surgery it resembles a shirt sleeve.

There are some insurance companies who question whether or not this type of procedure should be covered by health insurance companies.  Cigna Corp, and Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield in Connecticut believe this is still an experimental procedure that has yet to be proven safe and effective.  There are definitely major risk factors involved in this type of surgery and recovery can take a long time.  Interested consumers should strongly consider the risks and weigh the benefits against the risks.

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