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Does Insurance Cover LASIK?
Traditionally, insurance companies considered LASIK eye surgery an elective surgery and not a medical necessity. Most elective procedures are not covered by insurance. However, these policies are starting to change, and some vision insurances now offer discounts on LASIK.
If you are looking for ways to save money on LASIK, a vision insurance plan may be a great payment option.
LASIK Cost Without Insurance
Recent market data found that the average LASIK cost without insurance fell in these ranges (amounts are per eye):
- 9.9% of LASIK surgeries cost between $2,501–$3,000
- 43.8% of LASIK surgeries cost between $2,001–$2,500
- 37.2% of LASIK surgeries cost between $1,501–$2,000
- 9.1% of LASIK surgeries cost between $1,001–$1,500
The average price of LASIK in the U.S. is around $4,500 for both eyes.
Keep in mind that pricing can vary depending on several factors:
- Any advanced technology used
- The surgeon’s experience level
- Special discounts, financing, or payment plans used (CareCredit is a popular financing option)
- The patient’s vision and any existing eye conditions or medical conditions (astigmatism, presbyopia, myopia, and other refractive errors)
- Any included touch-up procedures or a lifetime guarantee plan
- Any facility fees, pre- and post-op visits, or medication costs
- Location of the LASIK clinic (LASIK may be more expensive in certain cities or states)
Many surgeons charge more for custom LASIK procedures and bladeless LASIK surgery. You can expect to pay a few hundred dollars more per eye for each of these options.
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Interestingly, surveys also show that over 70 percent of eye surgeons in the U.S. charge the same amount for all LASIK procedures. Some surgeons feel that they do not want the patient to decide on a LASIK procedure based on price, but on what is best for their eyes.
What Insurance Covers LASIK?
There are several vision health plans offering insurance coverage for laser vision correction. This is not a comprehensive list as benefits and plans vary from state to state. It is always important to shop around and check with multiple insurance providers before purchasing your vision insurance.
Some participating vision insurance policies include:
- Vision Service Plan (VSP)
- Davis Vision
Most of these insurance plans require you to see a surgeon in-network, as they have contracts with specific LASIK clinics. Or, they may offer special offers if you go in-network.
A benefit of choosing a surgeon in-network is that the eye doctor is approved by the insurance to provide LASIK to its members, which may give you some peace of mind.
LASIK Cost With Insurance
Each vision insurance plan may provide slightly different benefits. Here is an overview of what they offer:
offers the Laser VisionCare Program, which is included in most VSP plans. This program provides 15 to 20 percent off standard prices or 5 percent off promotional LASIK pricing. Under this plan, members will not pay more than $1,800 per eye for conventional LASIK or $2,300 per eye for custom LASIK. Enhancements or touch-ups are included at no additional cost.
EyeMed provides 15 percent off standard LASIK pricing or 5 percent off promotional pricing. They also offer $800 off a custom LASIK treatment, but you cannot combine this with other discounts. You get free lifetime enhancements on most LASIK procedures. EyeMed members can access these LASIK benefits through the U.S. Laser Network, which partners with over 600 LASIK surgeons across the nation.
Davis Vision partners with QualSight to offer members up to 40 to 50 percent off traditional LASIK procedures, as compared to average national pricing. They also offer significant discounts on custom or bladeless LASIK procedures. According to Davis Vision, their members pay under $1,000 per eye for traditional LASIK and $1,400 per eye for custom LASIK. QualSight has an extensive network of about 1,000 LASIK surgeons to choose from.
MESVision partners with QualSight to provide LASIK benefits. The discounts are similar to Davis Vision’s offerings. MESVision also works with LASIKPlus, which is another LASIK provider network. LASIKPlus offers $800 off or up to 20 percent off certain LASIK procedures.
Spectera vision insurance is offered through United Health Care. They also partner with QualSight to provide their LASIK discounts. You may receive 40 to 50 percent off traditional LASIK surgery.
Keep in mind that your primary health insurance may contract with some of these vision plans to offer coverage. If you already have health insurance, you can contact the company to see if they also provide vision coverage.
Can I Use My FSA or HSA for LASIK
FSA stands for Flexible Spending Account. It allows you to set aside pre-tax dollars to be used for medical expenses. You can open an FSA through your employer if they offer that option. You can use your FSA to pay for vision correction surgery, though it might not cover the full procedure.
If you are self-employed, you cannot set up an FSA. However, you can set up an HSA, which stands for Health Savings Account. You can use your HSA to pay for LASIK, eye exams, and other eye care procedures.