Obesity Surgery

, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 245–248 | Cite as

The Impact of Bariatric Surgery on the Veterans Administration Healthcare System: A Cost Analysis

  • Scott F Gallagher
  • Magdalena Banasiak
  • John P Gonzalvo
  • Daniel P Paoli
  • Janice Allwood
  • Debra Morris
  • Michel M Murr
  • David H Shapiro
Article

Background: The economic burden of caring for veterans with clinically severe obesity and its comorbidities is straining the Veterans Administration (VA) healthcare system. The authors determined the cost of Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass (RYGBP) in the VA's single-payor healthcare system. Methods:The records of all 25 patients who underwent RYGBP from May 1999 to October 2001 were reviewed. All obesity-related health-care costs including hospitalizations as well as outpatient visits, medications and home health devices were calculated for 12 months before and after the RYGBP. Results: Age was 52±2 yr and preoperative BMI was 52±2 kg/m2; ASA score was III (21 patients) and II (4 patients). Mean follow-up was 18 months.Total cost of care for these patients preoperatively was $10,778±2,460/patient (outpatient visits=$5,476±682, hospital admissions=$12,221±6,062, and home health devices=$1,383±349). Postoperative length of stay was 8±0.5 days. Cost of the gastric bypass was $8,976±497/pt (OR fixed cost=$1,900/patient + ICU and ward=$7,076±497/patient). For the first postoperative year, 6 patients had 12 admissions, but routine outpatient visits were significantly reduced from 55±6 to 18±2 postoperatively (P<0.001).The cost of all care excluding peri-operative charges for 1 year after gastric bypass was $2,840±622/patient (P=0.005 vs preop). Conclusions: Operative treatment of clinically severe obesity reduces obesity-related expenditures and utilization of healthcare resources. The cost of undertaking RYGBP at the VA is offset by reduction of health-care costs within the first year after surgery. These data support allocation of resources to support existing bariatric surgery programs throughout the VA system.

BARIATRIC SURGERY MORBID OBESITY COST ANALYSIS VETERANS ADMINISTRATION VA ROUX-EN-Y GASTRIC BYPASS 

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Copyright information

© Springer 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Scott F Gallagher
    • Magdalena Banasiak
      • John P Gonzalvo
        • Daniel P Paoli
          • Janice Allwood
            • Debra Morris
              • Michel M Murr
                • David H Shapiro

                  There are no affiliations available

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