The "cost" depends on how you look at "cost" (and I don't mean the cost to the boy later in life ... that's a whole different can of worms!) -- what the doctor CHARGES you or what the insurer actually PAYS the doctor -- and also the location/setting of the procedure.
For outpatient circ, e.g., done in the doctor's office, the CHARGES range from about $300-500 based on location and whether it's done by a pediatrician or a urologist/pediatric urologist. In terms of what insurers pay to the doctor, I would assume it's no more than 80% of the charges, and likely less in many places (even as low as 40-50% of charges ... so, as little as $120 per procedure).
For neonatal circ, done in the hospital, there are doctor's charges (usually to the OB or resident who performs the procedure), which are similar to the outpatient example above; plus there is a facility charge that is paid to the hospital. Yep, the hospital gets in on the action, too, which is why hospitals actively solicit for circ after births in most hospitals. I am not sure how much the facility fee is, but I think that someone (Ron?) once quoted a figure around $300 per procedure.
In some cases, the hospital will re-sell the foreskin to pharmaceutical/cosmetics companies, which puts more money in the hospital coffers beyond the facility fee. I have no idea how frequently this happens, but I understand that it does happen. It's not a "cost" in the sense that parents/insurers pay it, but it is a financial transaction that occurs related to RIC.
All of these "costs" assume there are no short-term or long-term complications (again, I don't mean to ignore the obvious complication of being without a foreskin ... but I can't quantify that cost). In the case of excess bleeding, re-circ, potentially ED, etc. -- there are many short- and long-term actual medical costs that should be considered as part of the cost of the initial circ, but are often ignored. Probably because we have no idea what the real stats are on most of the "side-effects" and "risks" (including death) associated with RIC.
Others with better info, please correct these numbers. I think that understanding the true financial implications of circ is very, very valuable.
Can you tell I am fired up about this today?!
Going to chill out now... HTH!
Edited by vachi73 - 1/5/11 at 11:01am