- Cancer Information
- Managing side effects
- Breast prostheses and reconstruction
- Breast reconstruction
- Costs and financial assistance
Costs and financial assistance for breast reconstruction
Before you have surgery, find out how much it will cost to have a breast reconstruction. Check with your surgeon, the hospital, Medicare and your private health fund, if you have one, before deciding to go ahead.
Find out whether you may need to pay for extras. These may include pain medicines, post-surgical bras and check-ups with your breast surgeon.
Learn more about:
There are services available to help with other costs associated with a reconstruction. These can include transport costs to attend medical appointments and the cost of prescription medicines. Ask the hospital social worker which services are available in your local area and if you are eligible to receive them.
If you need legal or financial advice, you should talk to a qualified professional about your situation. Cancer Council offers free legal and financial services in some states and territories for people who can’t afford to pay – call 13 11 20 to ask if you are eligible.
If you have your nipple tattooed, there is a Medicare rebate for this if the tattooing is done by a health professional with a Medicare provider number. You can also ask your private health fund, if you have one, if they cover the cost for this.With my private insurance, I was significantly out of pocket, due to the anaesthetist charging well above the schedule fee. However, the advantage gained with the reconstruction was well worth the cost.
Download a PDF booklet on this topic.
A/Prof Elisabeth Elder, Specialist Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon, Westmead Breast Cancer Institute and Clinical Associate Professor, The University of Sydney, NSW; Dragana Ceprnja, Senior Physiotherapist and Health Professional Educator, Westmead Hospital, NSW; Jan Davies, Consumer; Rosemerry Hodgkin, Consumer; Gillian Horton, Owner and Director, Colleen’s Lingerie and Swimwear, ACT; Ashleigh Mondolo, Clinical Nurse Consultant Breast Care Nurse, Mater Private Hospital South Brisbane, QLD; Dr Jane O’Brien, Specialist Oncoplastic Breast Cancer Surgeon, St Vincent’s Private Hospital, VIC; Moira Waters, Breast Care Nurse, Breast Cancer Care WA; Sharon Woolridge, Consumer; Rebecca Yeoh, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council Queensland.
View the Cancer Council NSW editorial policy.