I'm not sure whether the PHI aspect has a bearing on what time gaps are involved, as I'm a self funded sleever about the have the op on May 3rd 16.
My first meeting with the doctor was April 13th 16, op date May 3rd 16, so 1 day under 3 weeks :-)
But I've been yoyo'ing for about 6 years over getting it done. Once I got into the doctor's office and he had the date available, I jumped at it to make a firm commitment. Had it been put out to July I'd have wavered.
Time factors were mainly around length of time I need to be on Optifast to get the girth down to make laparoscopic surgery possible/easier, in my case 2 weeks will do. Also needed to get CT scan and blood tests done.
So 2 weeks down, 1 week to go to op day. I can't wait, I so need this done.