Posted - April 18, 2009

Medicaid and Obesity Surgery

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services made a recent announcement concerning Medicare coverage of bariatric surgery as a treatment for diabetes. For individuals suffering from obesity, diabetes is a common ailment. This Medicare plan offers coverage for diabetics with non-insulin-dependent diabetes or type 2 diabetes only. Individuals must have a BMI of at least 35 to be eligible for this medical coverage and the treatment must be rendered at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Patients with BMI’s lower than 35 will not be included in this obesity surgery medical coverage.

In order to be covered, in the 2006 Medicare plan for bariatric surgery, individuals must also have exhibited a serious health condition or co-morbidity in addition to morbid obesity, such as coronary artery disease, hypertension or osteoarthritis to qualify for this coverage. This new Medicare coverage offers safe options for these individuals to prevent complications from these dire health conditions.

Any beneficiaries who feel they are qualified for this medical coverage must have a BMI of 35 or higher, as the CMS has determined that those patients with lower BMI’s do not benefit enough to have the risks outweigh the benefits.