Cost of Open Heart Surgery in India

As per the WHO, cardiovascular diseases account for about 45% of deaths in the case of Indian adults aged 40 to 69. Disorders in heart and blood vessels lead to most CVDs and often need to undergo surgery if required. One such surgery is open-heart surgery, one of the most advanced and costly surgeries in the world.

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    What is an Open Heart Surgery?

    Open heart surgery is any type of heart surgery where the chest is opened to reach the heart so that the surgeon can treat heart problems. The procedure requires the surgeon to cut through the sternum and spread the ribs. The term ‘open heart’ can be misleading as it is the chest that is opened to access the heart.

    Open heart surgery is done to repair any abnormalities, damaged areas, insert implants or during a heart transplant to restore the normal functioning of the heart.

    Cost of Open Heart Surgery

    As per a WHO survey in 2016, out of approximately 63% of the deaths in India were due to non-communicable diseases, 27% of them were due to CVDs. Identifying them and ensuring appropriate treatment can help reduce such deaths. Being a major operation, the average cost of open heart procedures is very high, especially in western countries. The cost can range between Rs. 1,50,000 and Rs. 5,50,000 depending on several factors.

    Factors Affecting Open Heart Surgery Cost in India

    The cost of heart surgeries in India is influenced by the following components:

    • Kind of hospital Government—  Private or Trust
    • Type of city—  the cost of operation is higher in metro cities
    • Type of technology or approach being used
    • Surgery type as well as the expertise and qualification of the surgeon
    • If paying on your own or using your health insurance plan
    • Patient's diagnosis and the extent of the surgery required
    • Overall fitness and general health of the patient
    • Room category and reputation of the medical institute

    While the cost of open heart surgeries in India is pretty less compared to other countries, it is still pretty high considering the average income of the people. To ensure financial stability, health insurance is one the best way to pay for such expensive surgeries.

    How Affordable is Cardiac Surgery in India?

    As per WHO, more than 75% of deaths due to CDVs take place in low/middle-income countries like ours.

    For an average Indian household, the cost of open heart surgery is a huge amount and they struggle to pay for this procedure as it exceeds their income. Just the cost of Coronary Angiography costs over Rs. 10,000 which is a lot for many people.

    The surgery is far more expensive if a child requires this surgery, with costs in private hospitals ranging between Rs. 1.5 lakh and 2.5 lakh. Many people end up either selling their assets or taking out a loan in order to pay for these expenses.

    Having a health insurance plan covering critical diseases can save people from these financial catastrophes.

    Tips to Prevent Cardiovascular Diseases

    Globally, CVDs take over 17 million lives annually as per the WHO. This surge in numbers has been attributed to many things, including changing lifestyle, eating habits, stress etc. Make sure to follow these prevention tips:

    • Avoid smoking or using tobacco; it damages the blood vessels and affects your heart's functioning
    • Try to get at least 30 to 60 minutes of workout daily
    • Control your weight; obesity poses a great risk and may cause other risks like high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol
    • Eat a balanced heart-healthy diet consisting of vegetables, legumes, lean meats, low-fat dairy and healthy fats
    • Get enough sleep; people with bad sleep habits are higher at risk of obesity, depression and heart attack

    Over to You,

    The absence of sufficient funds often prevents them from getting diagnosed on time or getting the proper treatment. Even if they can shell out the costs of the operation, the subsequent debt and change in the quality of life often lead to a financial crisis later.

    It thus becomes extremely important to have a sturdy financial backup like critical care health insurance to combat these financial burdens during difficult times.

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