29 answers

It Is Really over $10,000 to Have a Baby?

We are happy to have recently found out that after a miscarriage and a year of trying we are expecting #3! With our first two kids we had insurance and never thought twice about the great benefits. Unfortunately because of changes in my husbands work hours we now have private insurance with a very high deductible and no maternity insurance. When I called my doctor today she said to plan on paying the doctor $2800 and the anesthesiologist and hospital around $8,000!!! So I have lots of questions: Will our private insurance pay once we meet our deductible even though we do not have maternity insurance? Is it hard to qualify for medicaid? Are there any great resources for having a baby at home with a midwife? I have heard that it is cheaper. Is there maternity insurance that we could get now, or it it too late or expensive? So to say the least we are a little overwhelmed. We are sure that there are many people that have babies without insurance, so what are we missing? Thank you for your help in alleviating this stress that can't be good for a new expecting mom.

Update: Thank you to everyone for your responses! I knew you guys would have all the answers! We are currently researching and looking into midwives and birth centers. We watched "The business of being born" last night and were inspired! A birth center that has been suggested is Better Birth in SLC. Does anyone have experience here? Or would suggest a Midwife or birth center in the Salt Lake Valley. It looks like the cost will be closer between $1600-$2900. Any books or videos that you guys would suggest to educate ourselves on midwifes and natural child birth? Thanks again for everyone's response.

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For the home birth go on FB and fine Birth without Fear. She is amazing. Everyone on there is a great support to everyone else. From what I have read it ranges from $4,000-$6,000. FAR Cheaper. And a birthing center is cheaper than a hospital (and right next to a hospital just in case) So I would be leaning towards the two I mentioned.

2 moms found this helpful

It does cost significantly less to deliver at home with a midwife. Unfortunately, as someone whose medical condition automatically made my pregnancies high risk, I never got to try it, but many of my friends have, and those who have had both medical and midwife deliveries vastly prefer the latter. I did have the experience of working with a midwife in hospital for my first child's birth, and found her help and support invaluable.

If you're interested, send me a private message on this forum, and I can send you contact information for a local SLC midwife I know (socially, not professionally) and who comes highly recommended.

1 mom found this helpful

Congratulations! Here is some info I found on medicaid for pregnant women in Utah...

http://health.utah.gov/medicaid/provhtml/pregnant_women.html

1 mom found this helpful

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No, its actually $250,000+ for the first 18 years. =)

6 moms found this helpful

It depends on your area. In ours, 10 years ago, it was 10k out of pocket JUST for the birth IF it was a vaginal birth with few to no complications.

But in addition to birthing costs:

- Ultrasounds were $1500 a pop
- Labwork was $700
- Office visit was $350 (and labwork done every office visit for high risk moi). With an average of 20-30 office visits per pregnancy... that stacks up to 7k WITHOUT labwork at a minimum

I had to have a bunch of other things that were buku bucks (cancer stuff), so I won't list them here.

YES birthing centers and home births were cheaper (about 1/2-2/3s the cost) IF AND ONLY IF nothing went wrong with mum OR baby. Good birthing centers are affiliated with hospitals and are VERY close to them.

My good friend went to have her 3rd child at the same birthing center she'd used in the past, had a complication, got rushed to the hospital... and had 20k stacked on top of the birthing center fees of 7k (ambulance, emergency c-sect, 3 days in the hospital).

Another family I met at Children's this go around has a "multi million dollar baby". Home birth gone wrong, their infant has been in the NICU for 3 months now.

So even best case... reeeeeally flippin expensive. Worst case, you're looking at millions.

That's why most states have "pregnancy medical" for those who don't have insurance. It is IMPOSSIBLE to pay, unless you're independently wealthy, for prenatal, birth, and post care without insurance.

3 moms found this helpful

If you have the birth at a hospital it will definitely cost more than if you have it at home or in a birth center. I know our birth center offers payment plans for moms without insurance. I did a quick search for birth centers in UT and found this link http://www.betterbirth.com/ They have a birth center in Orem, which I don't think is too far from you and their packages start at $1600 depending on the birth choice you choose.

If your income is low enough you might also qualify for medicaid, so you might want to check that out as well.

Congratulations and good luck!

3 moms found this helpful

Our bill for my last c-section topped $30,000, so yes, it costs a lot to have a baby. Congrats and good luck!

3 moms found this helpful

Congrats!

First, I think what you need to do is not panic. Start making calls...to your insurance holder, your docs, etc. and start gathering general information. Ask your OB/GYN office for guidance, suggestions, etc.

Don't feel bad if you need to look into whether you qualify for medicaid.

Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

For the home birth go on FB and fine Birth without Fear. She is amazing. Everyone on there is a great support to everyone else. From what I have read it ranges from $4,000-$6,000. FAR Cheaper. And a birthing center is cheaper than a hospital (and right next to a hospital just in case) So I would be leaning towards the two I mentioned.

2 moms found this helpful

We literally could not get insurance when I found out I was pregnant. We tried EVERYTHING. Finally, we MOVED to central PA where there was a hospital that caters to the large Amish and Mennonite communities with a very low out of pocket maternity package fee. (How's that for thinking outside of the box in the good old uninsured U.S.of A....) It was INSANELY LOW. It would have cost me $38,000 for ONE birth where we were previously living with NO complications.

Here, my family doc was $2200 for all prenatal visits. I refused all pricy tests which would have been extra. The hospital delivery was about $2500, and you guessed it, epidural was not even an option for us with the cost of the anesthesiologist. So I was drug free. (but for my second I indulged in some nubane thank you very much). So all in all, it was about $5000, and there was a 20% discount to pay within 30 days, and we had been saving, so we did pay the first within 30 days. The second we spread out longer, and my third was an emergency c -section. We just finished paying everything off after 5 years of beefy monthly payments.

1 mom found this helpful

Midwives are much cheaper. How were your first two deliveries. If you went natural before a homebirth is a great option. They are usually $3500. Also look into birth centers. I had my first at a birth center for $5000. That included all prenatals and infant care to two weeks postpartum. I had a wonderful experience and am pregnant with number two going back to the same place. There are definitely other options but it probably will not include an epidural. If that is a must have for you then you're looking at $12000.

1 mom found this helpful

I've had two babies out of pocket. Insurance didn't cover and it was around $3800. It would depend on the midwife, but it's definitely less expensive. I'd look around at midwives, find some doulas in your area and ask for recommendations for good midwives. Then go have a free visit with them to ask them all your questions (financial as well as their birth knowledge and emergency situations, etc). Oh, and watch "The Business of Being Born" in case you are nervous for out of hospital.

1 mom found this helpful

Congratulations! Here is some info I found on medicaid for pregnant women in Utah...

http://health.utah.gov/medicaid/provhtml/pregnant_women.html

1 mom found this helpful

My uncomplicated vaginal delivery at a hospital 5 months ago was about $38,000 total for me and my son's care, with the insurance we paid around $3,000. Good luck, we would've gone bankrupt with the insurance!

1 mom found this helpful

Qualifying for medicaid is EASY if you have very low income, are a US citizen, or have no maternity coverage.

yes, an uncomplicated hospital delivery and prenatal care is about $10000. When i had gestational diabetes with my first it was about a $30,000 bill for the extra prenatal care and delivery, even though it was uncomplicated and I followed my prescribed diet, medications and injections religiously. There is no way that I could have afforded that out-of pocket. I was on WY medicaid (and yes during my first pregnancy I was working full-time, as was my husband.) I chose not to take WIC, though I qualified for that too.

My second was substantially less- about $6000, but I had no gestational diabetes. I also had no epidural with either birth, so that would have been more.

In WY, you have to have a hospital birth, as being a home "traditional" midwife is not legal here. I guess you could deliver your baby at home alone... but I wouldn't recommend it!

Call your local public health dept or department of family services. They can help show you your options (here we have medicaid AND programs for higher income families without insurance,call "best beginnings") Also, if there are midwifes around call them for quotes. Know that in SOME states, if you get medicaid you will have to select an approved provider on their list.

Whatever you do, don't wait. The sooner you get prenatal care, the less complications you'll have, and the less it will cost. Oh- and grab some prenatal vitamins next time you go to the store!

-M.

PS- if we had a birthing center here I would SO do it. Our hospital had a large jacuzzi tub, and I got to use it with my last baby! Unfortunately they don't "allow" water births... but I am telling you I was about have tempted to just plain refuse to get out of the tub it was so nice and relaxing! Of course, I did give in and go back into the bed for the pushing... but that was SO nice!

-M.

1 mom found this helpful

my goodness I am glad I dont live where everyone else does!!! way to expensive. I am just talking delivery fee's, and I had c-sections, it was less than $3,000, even with all the prenatal it was total $6,000 max, and I had complications and health issues. and no insurance CANNOT deny you coverage just because you are pregnant, it cannot be considered a pre existing condition. and I know for fact because when i was pregnant with our oldest my husband put me on his insurance after I was pregnant and then I switched jobs and got the insurance from my work and they also took me even though i was 5 months pregnant at the time. i would see if they have a payment option, look into medicaid, the worst that happens is they say no right. good luck and congratulations!

1 mom found this helpful

I would really recommend looking for a midwife at a birthing center, or having a home birth (if you don't need a c-section.)

1 mom found this helpful

Well it depends on your area. The delievery of my child was under $8,000
(and I got two different anesthesiologist for two rounds of epidural) and it was $149 for each of my prenatal appiontments. medicaid is very good at covering pregnant women and children. however this is if you have no insurance. I am not sure how it is effected with private insurance even if they won't cover pregnancy related care, but it shouldnt be to hard. depending on how far along you are you may even be eligiable for presumptive coverage intill the actual medicaid kicks in (because sometimes it can take awhile) however when they calculate your income levels most of your bills will NOT be taken into account. I know that in the state of indiana you have to make less then about $3200 gross a month. and then do consider (and give you a small credit for) car and housing payments and one utility, and child care. but other bills are not counted.

1 mom found this helpful

My SIL's sister is a midwife. She used to live in Utah (that's where you live, right?). Anyway, I would look for a CERTIFIED midwife in your area. Look into birth centers (in MN it's about $5,000 for a birth center birth - my hospital birth with a midwife was close to $10 - and I had no interventions at all - labored for 4 hours, delivered, and then stayed 36 hours after). You could birth at home or in a center with a midwife, or look into short stays at hospitals with a midwife. The daily charge for me and baby was insanely expensive at our local hospital, had I known it would be over $2500 a day, I would have left much sooner.

J.

1 mom found this helpful

Watch "the business of being born". If all goes normal there is no reason for costly hospitals or doctors, you can get great care from a midwife for a small fraction of the cost.

1 mom found this helpful

Congratulations!

It was over $10,000 16 years ago

"Will our private insurance pay once ...." I don't understand the question. Are you saying that your private insurance does not include maternity benefits? If yes, then the anwer would be no. Read your policy, if there's something you don't understand, call and ask.

The point of insurance is to protect you or cover you for "IF". Since you already are pregnant, I doubt you'll be able to find coverage.

I'm sorry I don't know about medicaid. You can check with your state's dept. of social services to see if there's any kind of state insurance available.

1 mom found this helpful

It does cost significantly less to deliver at home with a midwife. Unfortunately, as someone whose medical condition automatically made my pregnancies high risk, I never got to try it, but many of my friends have, and those who have had both medical and midwife deliveries vastly prefer the latter. I did have the experience of working with a midwife in hospital for my first child's birth, and found her help and support invaluable.

If you're interested, send me a private message on this forum, and I can send you contact information for a local SLC midwife I know (socially, not professionally) and who comes highly recommended.

1 mom found this helpful

Applying for state assistance you may qualify if your income is low enough here in KS the guidlines are for a family of 3 it is around 2100 or so I would have to loo it up again a month but they don't include the other household members it is just for pregnancy & the unborn child father would not receive any benefits,it is much harder to get stae assistance for adults than children,if you apply as a family & put down that you are pegnant you may have better luck qualifying but check to see if you can have 2 insurances 1 beign the private health care insurance & second government assistance especially since you have no maternity coverage.
Are you a high risk pregnancy if not you can use a midwife choose to deliver in hospital or birth center,call you local health clinic for maternity care they have a sliding fee scale & see who you can be transferred to,have their prenantal services I don't know about delivery you'll have to ask but i'm sure it has to be one of their OBs.I'll write more later

1 mom found this helpful

yes , our bill from the hospital after the delivery and the NICU for a week was just over $25k

1 mom found this helpful

Definitely look into homebirth. It is safe, assuming you have a low risk pregnancy, and wonderful. My homebirth was definitely my favorite of my 3 (first was a natural birth in a hospital, second was at home, and third was in my car on the way to a birth center.) My homebirth cost about $5000 including prenatals, but we live in Massachusetts, and things tend to be expensive here. Many homebirth midwives have a sliding scale, or are willing to barter for part or sometimes even all of their fee, depending on what your skills are. They are often also willing to make payment plans. I don't know of any homebirth midwives in your area, but a way to try to find some might be to get in touch with some doulas local to you. You can do that by going to the DONA website (dona.org) and finding a doula near you.

Good luck!

Here in TX when I checked into going with a midwife it was 4,000. I ended up going the hospital route bc it was much cheaper with insurance, closer to 2,000. My mom has a friend that did not have insurance and ended up having to go to the hospital for an emergency c-section and it was well over 10k, and that was some ten years ago or so. So 10k sounds about right for today, bummer I know! But I know my mom's friend was able to work with the hospital and pay it over time. So if you decide to go the midwife route, which will be cheaper, if you end up needing the hospital I am sure they will work with you even though it is expensive. Congrats!! I know the money is bananas, but it will get paid and you will have that precious little one forever :D

I had a quick (I was there 2.5 hours before delivery) uncomplicated, unmedicated delivery at the hospital and was out in 24 hours and my bill was almost $12000. Thankfully, we have insurance that covered all but 10%. You might call around to birthing centers to get an estimate of prenatal and delivery fees. If you aren't a good candidate for a home delivery or even birthing center delivery, please just start saving now and asking about hospital payment programs. Yours and your baby's health is too important to risk. Babies are expensive, but so precious.Congrats on #3! Nurse midwife Mom

It was over 10,000 ten years ago WITH INSURANCE.

Another option is find a birthing center. They will be way less than 10,000. For the hospital, the anesthesia is only if you want that, which if you are contemplating home birth maybe you are ok with not using it? I would call an insurance sales person (one who helps you with finding the right insurance) they will be able to answer your questions about maternity insurance etc... good luck! PS I had a natural (no drugs) birth, and I recommend it :)

You can visit utahfriendsofmidwives.blogspot.com for a list of most of the home birth midwives in the state. You have a lot of options. Costs for home birth range from about $2000-$3000, with variations on what is included in that price as far as lab work, supplies, etc.

Look into a home birth. That will eliminate the hospital charges and the delivery will also be less. I think the total, including prenatal visits, was less than $2000. Ultra sounds and labs costs were additional. My daughter had her third baby this spring with a home birth and she was very pleased with it. She saw the midwife regularly just as she would've seen a doctor. The midwife is trained and licensed and used medial labs for tests. My daughter also saw her ob/gyn a couple of times.

There were 3 midwives who attended the birth. They brought lots of equipment, such as oxygen that they didn't need but it was there if they needed it.

My daughter's first baby was born with a epidural. Her second came so quickly there wasn't time for pain relief. Her third was entirely natural and she says that is the best birth of all three. The main midwife was very supportive, coaching her thru the process in a calm and gentle manner. Because of the many visits which included home visits the entire family was comfortable with the midwives. The 8 and 10 yo sibs were there for the entire process and saw the birth.

It was a really good experience for all of us. It felt so natural/normal, the way birthing should be. I highly recommend it.

Some doctors are willing to work with you if you don't have insurance. You can always call a midwife and see what cost through them would be. It is not so easy to qualify for medicaid but you could also call their office. Sometimes hospitals will write expenses off if there is some kind of medical need. For example they wrote off my husband's heart by-pass surgery.

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