If have decided that you do not want to have children or you are a parent and you do not wish to have any more children, you may be considering a vasectomy. Also known as male sterilization, vasectomies are quite common. Recent studies have shown that an estimated 500,000 vasectomies are performed each year.
A vasectomy it a minor surgery that is done in an outpatient setting. The procedure prevents the sperm from entering semen. While the testes still produce sperm, instead of entering the semen, the body soaks it up. Vasectomies are one of the most reliable forms of birth control; it’s been proven that other than abstinence, male sterilization is the most effective way to prevent pregnancy.
If you are thinking about having a vasectomy, you are likely wondering about the cost of the procedure and whether or not your health insurance will cover it. Continue reading to learn valuable information about how to cover the expense of the procedure.
How Much Does a Vasectomy Cost?
Generally speaking, vasectomies are a cost-effective form of birth control. The cost of the procedure varies; ranging from around $350 to $4,000. Compared to the total cost of female contraceptives and tubal ligations (female sterilization), a vasectomy is more cost-effective. Nevertheless, paying hundreds or thousands of dollars can be a financial burden for many men.
Fortunately, there are ways that you can reduce the out-of-pocket expense.
Health Insurance and Vasectomies
The majority of health insurance companies will cover at least some of the cost of a vasectomy, especially if the procedure is performed in an outpatient setting. However, before you schedule an appointment, it’s important that you check your plan to make sure that it does offer coverage for the procedure. Typically, health insurance companies cover all or the majority of the expense once policy holder has met his deductible.
If you have health insurance, whether through your employer or through the Marketplace, contact your carrier to find out if your plan does offer coverage for the procedure. Ask for the details of your policy; for example, you may have to have the procedure done by an in-network doctor; if you do and you have the procedure done by an out-of-network doctor, you may end up having to cover the entire cost of the procedure out of your own pocket. Additionally, if the procedure is covered by your insurance, make sure you find out about any out-of-pocket expenses that you will be responsible for; for example, your deductible and any copays.
Ask for the details of your health insurance plan so that you have a hard copy you can refer to. Also, when you schedule an appointment, be sure that you find out if the facility accepts your insurance. If you qualify for Medicaid or other state medical programs in your local area, a vasectomy may be covered, as well.
What if You Don’t have Health Insurance?
If you do not have health insurance coverage, there are ways that you may be able to get assistance for a vasectomy. Many health care professionals that perform the procedure, as well as clinics, provide what is known as a sliding scale fee. That is, the cost of the procedure will be base on your annual income. Some doctors also offer discounted rates if the procedure is paid for in full, and in cash. Additionally, you can inquire about a payment plan, as many medical care providers do offer payment plan options for vasectomies.
You could pay for your vasectomy with a credit card and pay the cost of the procedure off over time. Another option that you might consider is taking out a small personal loan, and you could use the funds to pay for your vasectomy.
Purchasing Health Insurance
If you currently do not have health insurance – or you do have insurance, but your plan does not cover vasectomies – you may be interested in purchasing a policy through the Marketplace that does offer coverage for male sterilization. There are several options available through the Health Insurance Marketplace. If you are having a difficult time trying to determine which plan to choose, speak to a reputable agent that specializes in health insurance. An agent will be able to help you navigate through all of the different options and find a plan that will best suit your needs.
Summing It Up
A vasectomy is the most effective form of birth control. If you are sure you do not want to have children, or that you are done having children, this minor medical procedure is the best way to prevent unwanted pregnancies. The cost of the procedure is relatively inexpensive, and with the right health insurance, it is actually quite affordable. If you have coverage, contact your carrier to find out if vasectomies are covered; if you don’t have coverage, you may be able to purchase a plan that will provide coverage for the procedure.