Insurance usually always covers the BCIR unless you have some weird state insurance. I had a 300 dollar copay and I am on Tricare. the stay is 21 days I Believe and it is worth it. You have the best care you can ever get during that time. YOu are allowed a guest to stay with you the entire time, they have spare beds in your suite and that person gets fed 3 times a day for free. They have washing machines, family rooms to watch movies on the large TV, individual cable and tv in every suite with computer desk and wifi. I never had care like I did at the Palms. CC is great, don't get me wrong, I was blown away by that hospital but Palms of Pasedena have that down like a well lubed machines. First hospital I ever went to that on the plaque said "Continent Ileostomy Center"
The whole floor is all BCIR patients. I made a lot of friends and always had people to hang out with. Dr Rhenke is probably one of the most skilled surgeons I have ever had and I have had a lot of surgeries. He is a good man too. He has donated and done a lot of things in the medical/surgical world to impress me.
My issues were GI related I mainly had after so I went to the CC after but that had nothing to do with my pouch it is a different part of my body. Either way in the end you go with your gut feeling.
The crew at the BCIR center do conferences around the US so maybe see if they are coming to a city near you. BCIR alumni go to them and a good place to have questions answered about the procedure. Also they have online chat once a month so you can join and ask questions there as well since the message board is usually dead, because we don't have that many issues I don't think we use it that much.
If you call Susan Kay at the Palms she can also provide you with BCIR alumni phone numbers and you can call and get reviews or ask questions. I think I had a list of 10 people all with my disease, she matched me with other people with FAP that had the BCIR. Talked to all different walks of life around the US. Helped to talk to people with my disease and have had the pouch for over 20 years or more.
I have a long history with illeostomy, then a K pouch, then the illeostomy again. I hated the illeostomy for obvious reasons, and for a while, the K pouch, done by Dr. Launer was fine. Then I started getting pouchitis, again, and again, worse each time. I had to have it taken down to an Illeostomy again. I've now spent over a decade with that, and I'm at the end of my rope. I'd rather well, I won't finish that sentence, but I desperately want the BCIR, and have a local doctor and hospital with a very good reputation, and in fact I've met him before to treat my pouchitis.
My problem is cost. I'm on O-Care, a PPO from Anthem, but they're pulling out of my market come September, I might be able to get on with Anthem, but even if they cover it, there's still a substantial copay. And if they don't, what does it cost? I have no idea how expensive this surgery is. I'm just sort of ruined by the whole thing, the only thing keeping me going is the hope that I can get that BCIR surgery.
Years ago, when I was a stupid kid, the ER surgeon told me as I lay screaming on a gurney, even after a large dose of demerol, that I have two choices, in two to three hours I would be in the morgue, or have the illeostomy surgery. I stupidly chose the latter. I'd like to be able to improve that choice today with BCIR, if I can afford it.