Like any medical procedure, the cost of circumcision varies from one provider to the next and one state or region to the next. For example, one facility in Utah charges $343 to perform a newborn circumcision while the same procedure costs $150 at another location in California. The cost also depends on whether the circumcision is being performed on an infant or an older child or adult.
Let’s explore why the cost of circumcision is even important to know. Once upon a time, it was a widely routine procedure in the United States. Actually, America is the only developed, first world nation that routinely performs infant circumcision. The tradition actually came to be in America as a way of hindering masturbation among males—a feat that undoubtedly did not work. Today, more and more parents are coming around to the idea that circumcision was never medically appropriate and as a result, many are opting out of it altogether.
In 2010, the circumcision rate for newborns in America during postpartum hospitalization was only 58.3 percent—a figure that has been steadily dropping in recent years. It is thought the figure may be closer to a 50/50 scenario now. If this downtrend continues in coming years as it is expected to, male circumcision will soon be considered abnormal, and most young men will be intact in America, as they are almost everywhere else.
Sometimes, intact men later need to be circumcised due to extenuating circumstances, such as phimosis, which is generally caused by diabetes. This is rare and occurs in only a minority of the intact population. Nonetheless, the cost of circumcision for an adult can come as quite a shock, especially if it’s not covered by insurance. When performed on adults, the procedure can cost as much as $3,000. Did you think it would cost that much?
Circumcision is far more common among infants than adults in America. The price of it has surprised many parents-to-be who are preparing for the birth of their sons only to find their insurance company doesn’t cover the procedure. Not so long ago, it was something nearly every insurance provider covered, until 2012 when the American Academy of Pediatrics released a statement that routine infant circumcision was no longer considered to be a great enough benefit that it warranted every newborn undergoing the procedure. As such, the AAP left it up to parents to decide what the correct path was for their children. As a result of this statement, insurance companies began to drop coverage for the procedure, a change that even Medicaid jumped on. The cost factor is often a deciding factor now for many parents who cannot otherwise afford to pay for a circumcision, though many others are starting to opt out now regardless due to trending revelations among American parents that the procedure is medically unnecessary.