Not surprisingly, the cost of having laser eye surgery is one of the most common questions received by the team at Envision Eye Centre. As laser eye surgery is almost always an elective procedure, the costs are generally funded directly by the patient. When shopping around for the best place to have your surgery, there are a number of things to compare cost wise to you make sure you are getting the best deal for both your bank balance and your vision.
Cost comparison of glasses and contact lenses
It is good to first compare the ongoing costs of glasses and contact lenses with the life-long result of laser eye surgery. If you think about what you pay for glasses, contact lenses and solution, optician appointments and prescription sunglasses, you could be looking at upwards of $500 per year. According to choice.com.au the average cost of laser eye surgery in Australia is between $2,500 – $3,000 per eye1. So, you are looking at a 10-year return on investment for both eyes. Many though simply rationalise the cost of laser eye surgery based on the convenience it adds to their day-to-day life by not having to rely on glasses to see..
Initial assessment costs
Some people are not eligible for laser eye surgery. It might be age, your prescription or some other interfering eye condition. An initial assessment is always required to determine eligibility and to determine what is the best laser eye surgery procedure for your personal circumstances. This assessment can be offered for free, although some clinics charge a consultation fee. Making sure you take this consultation fee into account as it could be throwaway money if you are not eligible. Read more on eligibility for laser eye surgery.
Envision Eye Centre offers free initial assessments to determine your eligibility for laser eye surgery.
Cost of different laser eye surgery procedures
There are three main types of laser eye surgery procedure. These are PRK, LASIK and SMILE®. PRK is oldest and most affordable procedure as the equipment is the least costly. LASIK is slightly more expensive given the procedure involves the use of two lasers. SMILE® is the latest evolution in laser eye surgery, has the quickest recovery and the least possible side-effects. It is slightly more expensive as it involves the latest equipment and is only performed by a limited number of surgeons.
It is important to follow the recommendation of your surgeon in terms of your laser eye surgery procedure. They can explain all the pros and cons of each, including costs, so you make the most informed decision.
Pre and post-operative medications
Before laser eye surgery a mild sedative is given to relax you along with numbing eye drops. After the procedure, eye shields to protect the eyes are given along with eye drops to help the healing process. It is also important to have direct contact with your surgeon immediately after surgery in case there is any excessive pain. When shopping around for prices, it’s best to check that these pre and post-operative medications and service is included.
Envision Eye Centre includes all pre and post-operative medication and eye shields as part of the procedure costs. This includes direct 24-hour access to your surgeon following surgery.
Cost of ongoing follow up appointments
Laser eye surgery patients should see their surgeon a number of times after surgery so they can have their eyes checked and vision tested. Normally these occur 1 day after surgery, 1 week after surgery, 1 month after surgery and a further 3 and 6-month check-up. These are essential to ensure your eyesight is as it should be and there are no infection or side-effects. Knowing what check-ups are included in your surgery costs is important in calculating the total cost of the surgery.
Envision Eye Centre does not charge any extra for any of these post-operative check-ups. They are all included in the cost of the procedure.
Costs of additional procedures
On rare occasions, laser eye surgery can under or over correct your eyesight. In these situations, a second procedure is usually required within 3-6 months. This second procedure can come at additional costs. It is important to consider this scenario, however rare, when comparing prices as it could add significant costs to your quest for perfect vision.
Envision Eye Centre includes any additional corrective procedures that are needed within 12 months of surgery in the initial surgery cost.
Medicare and private health cover assistance
If you get a referral from a GP, Medicare will usually provide a rebate on your first appointment with the Ophthalmologist. However, as an elective procedure, no other Medicare benefits are available unless laser eye surgery is used to treat a specific disease. Some private health funds will cover all or part of your laser eye surgery if you have had the top level of cover for over 3 years.
Obtaining medical finance
Medical finance providers can help get the upfront funds for your laser eye surgery. These are much like a personal loan with some offering interest free periods. The finance arrangement is however between the patient and the finance provider, the clinic is simply provided the funds by the finance company prior to surgery. It is important to seek financial advice or consider your ability to repay this loan including any interest that will apply.
The costs of laser eye surgery are difficult to quote as each patient will require a slightly different treatment. The most important thing when comparing prices is to compare the cost of laser eye surgery correctly including all additional costs and to ensure you are getting the best surgery outcome possible. It is hard to put a price on having perfect vision.
Envision Eye Centre - Your Choice for Laser Eye Surgery
Envision Eye Centre offers all types of laser eye surgery at competitive prices. As principal surgeon, I personally perform all laser vision correction procedures in the comfort of my Sydney CBD clinic. You can find out more about my surgery credentials on my surgeon profile. The Envision clinical team and I will answer all your questions prior to surgery, and we will be just a phone call away during your recovery. When you decide to have laser eye surgery, we will make it a decision you will never regret.