January 20, 2006, Newsletter Issue #16: Save on Surgery

Tip of the Week

Even with health insurance, surgery can cost a lot. Unless itís an emergency, take the time to explore your options before your operation.

Get a second opinion. When it comes to something as important as surgery, you may want to speak to more than one surgeon to find out what treatment is best for you. Check with friends, family and coworkers to see if they have any surgeons to recommend.

Bring a partner. Have a friend or family member accompany you to consultations about your surgery. They can help you ask questions, and take down the doctor or surgeon`s answers.

Discuss your options. Find out if there are any alternatives to surgery available to you. Sometimes a change in lifestyle or taking medicines can be effective. Make sure you have a clear understanding of the potential risks of these treatments.

Talk to your insurance company. Before surgery, find out how much your insurance will cover and what portion of the bill you will be responsible for.

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Jerry Mayo