Cost of Surgery without Insurance | In-Depth Detailed Guide

More than the majority of Americans can afford to spend. To illustrate, let’s use a straightforward example. Depending on the location and the number of images captured, a CT scan costs anywhere from $300 to $3000 at the hospital chargemaster. Non- or under-insured patients might expect to pay this amount. Let’s learn the cost of surgery without insurance.

So, paying for a procedure out of pocket or self-paying can be costly. Suppose you don’t have insurance, or your insurance won’t cover your surgery.

Your appendix rupture, you break a leg skiing, or you’re having a baby may be the most prominent examples of how having health insurance may save you money, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Hospital costs without insurance are a lot, even if you don’t know what kind of surgery you’re having. 

If you’ve got insurance, you can save money on things like the flu vaccination you’ve been wanting or the throat culture to rule out strep that you need every day.

While self-pay surgery isn’t ideal, it may be more appealing than a life of agony or an unhealthy condition. Since most insurance companies only cover a percentage of the expense, you may need to look into self-pay solutions, even when you have insurance, as low as an Outpatient Diagnostic Co-Pay may require those with medical insurance. 

Every fifth uninsured person forgoes medical treatment due to the cost. Even though you’re responsible for the entire price because you haven’t yet met your insurance deductible, you’re likely to get a discount on the charge.

Remember that the discounted rates only apply to doctors and hospitals part of the PPO’s provider network. You’ll still be responsible for the higher master charge rate if you have health insurance.

Those without insurance will pay far more than those who do. The insurance company’s negotiated price may vary. 

Keeping an eye on your money is essential.

All of this can quickly mount up, even if you aren’t accomplishing anything noteworthy, even though it’s impossible to estimate your out-of-pocket costs for various procedures. 

So, the International Federation of Health Plans found that the following procedures have the highest chargemaster rates in the United States:

MRI: $1,119

  • Surgery to remove cataracts costs $3,530.
  • a single day at the hospital costs $5,220
  • $10,808 for giving birth.
  • $15,930 for removing the appendix
  • A new knee costs $28,184.

Are there free surgeries?

Some operations and visits are completely free if you have insurance, besides the discount you receive for simply having one. You read that correctly: They’re free. As part of the broader category of “preventive care,” these procedures are now available to everyone with health insurance thanks to the Affordable Care Act.

To give you an idea of how much you could have to pay for these otherwise free services:

At your local Rite-Aid drugstore, you can get a flu shot for roughly $40.

  • Diabetes and cholesterol screenings are available for roughly $125 to $200 at CityMD urgent care clinics in New York, New Jersey, and Washington, DC, with additional lab fees.
  • According to a John Hopkins research, the average cost of annual wellness visits is $160.
  • According to Planned Parenthood, you’ll need two doses of the HPV vaccine, which costs around $250 each time.
  • Pills for contraception: A year’s worth of monthly packs will cost anywhere from $240 to $600.

How to Reduce your Surgery Costs?

Cost of Surgery without Insurance

If you seek to pay for your operation out of pocket, there are many ways to reduce the overall cost of the surgery before it is performed. The way is to find a financial helpline that provides funding options, such as the National Healthcare Association Insurance” program which provides healthcare services for less than $50 per person per month.”

This implies that if you have insurance, all care providers, including anesthesia, surgery, the hospital, and the pharmacy, must be in-network. 

The payout to the general public is that insurance is more affordable than cash-payers. This difference is that people who have insurance are paid in kind, whereas people who don’t have insurance are charged nothing.

To get the best possible pricing for your surgery because you’re paying out of pocket, call the surgeon, surgical center, anesthetic provider, and anybody else delivering your care. You may be surprised at how much the prospective bill can change if you are friendly persistent, and explain your circumstances.

Questions to Ask Before Financing

Cost of Surgery without Insurance

Ask the following questions to the lender and yourself before obtaining surgery financing:

  • Whether or not you’ll be able to pay your bills on time depends on how much money you have available.
  • You can’t spend more than the minimum on your credit cards, so will you be paying them off for the rest of your life?
  • If you misjudge the price and consequently the payments, will you be forced into bankruptcy?
  • Paying your credit card bill may prevent you from affording the post-surgery prescription drugs you need.

Using Retirement Funds as Security for a Loan

You may be able to take out a loan from your 401k or 403b retirement plan without incurring a penalty. In most cases, you can take out half your vested balance—up to $50,000—for healthcare expenses under these plans.

You might incur tax penalties if you leave your job before repaying the money you borrowed, regardless of the length of the payback period. Taking money out of your account will result in interest being deducted from your account, unlike traditional borrowing. 

Individual investors, not employers, typically administer Roth IRAs, so you’ll likely have to do some digging of your own. If you want to know the cost of surgery without insurance, read our FAQ section.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Pay for Surgery Costs?

You can cover the cost of surgery with a variety of inventive methods. Using Retirement Funds as a Source of Funds Your 401k or 403b retirement plans may allow you to take out a loan against the money you’ve already saved without incurring a fee. Up to $50,000 of your vested benefits (in most plans) can be taken out for medical expenditures.

Planned Payments: It is typical for them to be offered when the operation is paid for by the patient rather than through insurance. In some cases, a written contract for monthly payments is in place. Hospitals are more than delighted to work out a payment strategy with enthusiastic patients in an unanticipated or emergency surgery.

In our opinion, monthly payments are more appealing than no payments at all. They should also ensure that the debt does not display as a lousy account on your credit record.

Crowdfunding for healthcare an example of this is a GoFundMe campaign driven by donors, and it’s beneficial for medical needs. In either case, you can begin a campaign on your behalf.

How to pay for surgery costs that insurance won’t pay?

Paying for a procedure out of pocket or self-paying can be costly. Insurance may not cover your needs, as with several weight reduction procedures and plastic surgeries in general. However, there are alternatives to pay for the medical care you need if you have to foot the bill out of your pocket.

While self-pay surgery isn’t ideal, it may be more appealing than a life of agony or an unhealthy condition. Since most insurance companies only cover a percentage of the expense, you may need to look into self-pay solutions, even when you have insurance.

What is the cost of gynecomastia surgery?

A gynecomastia operation in 2020 will cost on average $4,239, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons’ figures. 

How much does breast reduction cost?

Surgeons charge for breast reduction depending on their training, expertise, and practice location. Ask your doctor if they offer payment options for patients.

How much does it cost to see a doctor in 56 USA without insurance?

It costs between $300 and $600, whether you see a specialist or not the lab has already tested.

What is the cheapest surgery?

The following are a few of the less-expensive surgical options:

  • In the US, the average surgeon charge for breast augmentation is $3,824, with 313,735 procedures performed.
  • The average surgeon fee for liposuction in the United States is $3,518 (based on 258,558 operations).
  • The national average surgeon charge for eyelid surgery (206,529 procedures) is $3,156.

What is the most expensive surgery?

  • The most costly procedure is the Transplantation of the intestines. a price tag of 1.1121.801
  • A new heart surgery cost: $787,700
  • Transplantation of bone marrow is an option. Allograft procedure costs $676,800. (USD 300,400 autologous)
  • Transplanted lungs. For two, the price is $657,800. (USD 450,400 for one)
  • Transplantation of a person’s liver. The cost is $523,400.
  • Surgery on the heart. USD 324,000 is the total cost.
  • An organ transplant of the pancreas. The price is USD 275,500.
  • Transplantation of a kidney. Prices start at $259,000.
  • Tracheotomy. USD 205,000 is the price tag.
  • Surgery for retinal disease. The total price was $ 153,000.

How can I get surgery without insurance or money?

Inquire about the hospital’s financial aid programs with the billing office. The hospital may point you toward an area nonprofit that can.

What happens if you can’t afford surgery?

Patients who lack health insurance, are underinsured or do not qualify for other government assistance programs, such as Medicaid, may benefit from hospital charity care (unpaid services).

Bottom line

A typical employer-sponsored plan costs $119 a month, which equates to about $1,400 in medical expenses or prescriptions each year. 

Medical visits are either free or expensive, depending on your insurance coverage. It’s common for a doctor’s appointment to cost between $300 and $600 if you don’t have insurance. Still, prices can vary widely depending on various circumstances, including the results of any lab tests or treatments performed during your visit.

Whether you don’t have health insurance or your premiums are prohibitively exorbitant, Mira can help you get the treatment you require. In exchange for a monthly subscription fee of $45 (or less), Mira members receive discounted rates on virtual and urgent care visits, lab testing, and prescription fills.

Self-paying may save you money in some cases. Before an operation, hospitals are eager to offer private pay rates because companies don’t cover plastic surgery. Plastic surgeons frequently negotiate fees with their patients.


Adam Grabois is an expert in all aspects of Insurance and Property with 20 years of experience. He is a licensed broker of all lines including property, casualty, life, and health. As a licensed adjuster, he is well-versed in all aspects of insurance, and he owns All Needs Insurance agency in Florida.

He attended Tufts University where he earned his undergraduate degree, followed by a Master's degree from Columbia University.

Adam shares his breadth of experience by helping many businesses and individuals manage risk and protect themselves financially. He now shares this with the audience of the "Pro Insurance Info" website.

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