Does Health Insurance Cover Dermatology? What You Need to Know

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If you have a skin condition that bothers you, you might want to see a dermatologist.

A dermatologist is a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating skin disorders.

But before you book an appointment, you might wonder: does health insurance cover dermatology?

The answer is not so simple.

It depends on several factors, such as the type of health insurance plan you have, the type of dermatology service you need, and whether it is medically necessary or cosmetic.

In this article, we will explain what dermatology is, what types of services are covered by health insurance, and how to find a dermatologist that accepts your insurance.

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What is dermatology?

Dermatology is a branch of medicine that focuses on skin disorders.

Dermatology is all about diagnosing, treating, and preventing various skin issues.

Some of the common skin conditions that dermatologists deal with are:

  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
  • Rosacea
  • Skin cancer
  • Skin infections
  • Warts

Dermatology can be divided into two categories: cosmetic dermatology and medical dermatology.

Cosmetic vs. medical dermatology

Cosmetic dermatology refers to procedures for the skin that are designed to improve its appearance and health.

The problem can be due to aging, sun damage, or skin scarring.

Essentially, with cosmetic dermatology, the patient wants to enhance his or her skin but not due to a medical need.

Examples of such practices include:

  • Botox injections
  • Chemical peels
  • Dermal fillers
  • Hair removal
  • Laser therapy

Medical dermatology refers to skin conditions of a medical nature. Examples of this include eczema, psoriasis, and skin cancer.

Your skin doctor can tell you if your condition is of a mandatory medical nature or if it is an elective procedure of a cosmetic nature.

If you’re dealing with a medical dermatology issue, it’s imperative to take care of it as soon as possible.

Does health insurance cover dermatology?

Health insurance companies will typically cover dermatology procedures that are medically necessary, which refers to diagnosis and treatments of skin conditions that are causing or have the potential to cause serious health problems if left untreated.

However, health insurance companies will usually not cover cosmetic dermatology procedures, as they are considered elective and not essential for your health.

These procedures are often expensive and out-of-pocket for most patients.

There are some exceptions to this rule, though.

For instance, some cosmetic procedures may be covered by health insurance if they also have a medical benefit.

For example, if you have severe acne scars that affect your mental health or self-esteem, your insurance company may cover some or all of the cost of laser therapy or chemical peels.

Another exception is if your cosmetic procedure is related to a medical condition or injury.

For example, if you have a birthmark or a mole that is suspicious for skin cancer, your insurance company may cover the removal or biopsy of it.

The best way to find out if your health insurance covers dermatology is to contact your insurance company before you book an appointment with your dermatologist.

You can ask them about your specific plan details, such as:

  • What types of dermatology services are covered and what are not?
  • Do you need a referral from your primary care doctor to see a dermatologist?
  • Do you need prior authorization from your insurance company for certain procedures?
  • How much is your deductible, copay, or coinsurance for dermatology visits?
  • Which dermatologists are in-network and which are out-of-network for your plan?

By asking these questions, you can avoid any surprises or unexpected bills when you see your dermatologist.

How to find a dermatologist that accepts your insurance?

Finding a dermatologist that accepts your insurance can be tricky, especially if you have a limited network of providers or live in a rural area.

Here are some tips to help you find a good dermatologist that works with your insurance:

  • Use your insurance company’s website or app to search for in-network dermatologists near you. You can filter by location, specialty, ratings, and availability.
  • Ask your primary care doctor for a referral or recommendation. They may know some reputable dermatologists that accept your insurance and can help you with your specific condition.
  • Ask your friends, family, or coworkers for referrals or reviews. They may have personal experience with some dermatologists and can give you honest feedback.
  • Check online reviews and ratings from other patients. You can use sites like Healthgrades, Zocdoc, or WebMD to find out more about the quality of care and customer service of different dermatologists.
  • Call the dermatologist’s office and confirm their insurance acceptance and availability. You can also ask them about their fees, policies, and procedures.


Dermatology is an important field of medicine that deals with skin disorders. Whether you need cosmetic or medical dermatology, you should always check with your health insurance company before you see a dermatologist. By doing so, you can save money and avoid hassle. You should also do some research and find a dermatologist that accepts your insurance and meets your needs. Remember, your skin is your largest organ and deserves the best care possible.

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