Step 1 – Attend an Informational/Support Group Meeting
Northwest and Sinai hospitals offer free public seminars (or webinars) about bariatric surgery. Attend one of these seminars to learn about the benefits, risks and complications of surgery. You will also learn about long-term lifestyle changes that you will need to make to maintain your weight.
If you are still interested in surgery after attending the seminar, then go to step 2.
Visit our Community Calendar or call 410-601-WELL to get an up-to-date listing of available seminars. Sinai Hospital Bariatrics Patients may listen to a prerecorded webinar hosted by Dr. Cynthia Long by linking here and completing the form. You will be automatically redirected to the webinar which you can listen to at any time.
Step 2 – Verify Your Insurance
First and foremost you need to contact your insurance company to see if your insurance covers weight loss surgery. Every insurance carrier and individual plan varies. Some plans may require you to lose a specific amount of weight before you are covered. Other plans may require a significant out-of-pocket expense. Know your specific plan’s surgery requirements before you call for an appointment.
Step 3 – Get Your Medical Records
Contact your primary care physician to get your medical records. Your physician can help you to determine what type of bariatric surgery is best for you, and he or she will assist you in gathering all of the documentation that you need for surgery. Once you have this documentation, your physician will write a formal referral to your weight loss center.
Depending on the type of bariatric surgery you will be undergoing, you may also need to get a psychological and nutrition evaluation. A psychological evaluation determines if patients have any existing eating disorders or any other psychiatric or psychological issues that might adversely affect the results of their surgery. A nutrition evaluation determines your eating behaviors and habits and educates you on how surgery will change them.
At this point, you will work with your bariatric surgeon and the office staff to create a plan for the months leading up to surgery and afterward.