Kaiser Vs. Others for Pregnancy and Delivery in San Diego

Updated on September 05, 2009
J.B. asks from Santee, CA
5 answers

We're about to start trying to have a baby, and I am unsure if I should stick with Kaiser or go with another insurance company in San Diego. Can you give me advice for going through the pregnancy and birthing process with Kaiser, vs. other carriers (Sharp, Scripps...). I've only heard bad things about Kaiser delivery, rooms not being very nice and/or having to share. I would like to be in pleasant surroundings while giving birth. I have also yet to find an OBGYN I like within Kaiser. Is there even a birthing center at La Mesa? Travelodge? I'm pretty sure I have total maternity coverage expect for the big day. Need help, figuring out what insurance carrier to stay with, for the best experience possible. Any and all information will be helpful!

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answers from San Diego on

I am currently pregnant (due September 19th). I started out with Scripps Mercy in Hillcrest and ended up switiching to Sharp. The reason being is that I really wanted to have my baby at Sharp Mary Birch. Sharp Mary Birch specializes in delivering babies. To me, that was the most important factor in deciding on a medical group.

I have truly enjoyed my experience with Sharp. I have gone on 2 hospital tours and have taken Childbirth Prep and Breastfeeding classes through them as well. They know babies. They know delivery. They know how to make you feel comfortable. Your husband can spend the night. They focus on having your baby "room-in" with you also. They have lactation consultants, breastfeeding support groups, and you even take a class before you are released that gives you more info on taking care of your baby once you get home.

I cannot speak for Kaiser, but I do know that Sharp delivers thousands of babies a year. They are the experts in labor and delivery. Sharp Mary Birch does have a "Baby on the Way" class for people thinking about switching to Sharp. It is free. You can go to their website and sign up for the class. I suggest going. It may help you make a decision.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

Hi There ... well this is an exciting time and you are doing the bes thing right now by consciously planning. My suggestion would be to change insurance so that you can go to Best Start Birth Center in Hillcrest. I had my little girl there a year ago and loved loved loved the prenatal care and birthing experience there!!!

Best of luck,



answers from San Diego on

I just gave birth with kaiser, and the experience was fine...really great actually. I saw a midwife for all my prenatal care...Betty Cox in San Marcos. A couple of times she was unavailable so I saw a couple of the Drs there instead, and I DID NOT like them.
Delivery was awesome. I delivered at the Kaiser hospital in Mission Valley on Zion. The nurses were all awesome. I didn't have one bad nurse....really great. However, you never know who will deliver you...it will be whomever is on call that day from all over the valley. Likely, it will be a midwife unless you have complications. There are always 2 midwifes and a Dr at that hospital, and one Dr at the Palomar hospital.

I was really happy with my delivery experience, but I ended up getting a great Dr. It is a little odd though, having someone deliver your baby that you have never met before.

Recovery was fine. Again, great nurses, MUCH better than my experience a few years ago at Mary Birch. However, all the rooms are shared. They do try really hard to keep you in your room by yourself. If they aren't too busy, you will be by yourself with just another empty bed. If they are busy, they will try to give you at least the first 14-16 hrs after delivery by yourself (you will be put in a room that someone just checked out of and someone won't be put in your room until you are close to checking out). The only thing I found odd was that a typical discharge is 24 hrs after delivery instead of 48 (which was what I thought was typical at most hospitals). If you deliver at Palomar, the rooms are private.

I hope that was helpful!



answers from San Diego on

I also had my little girl at Best Start. I'm not sure which insurances they take....Take a tour and learn about birthing naturally. It can be a very empowering experience.



answers from San Diego on

I gave birth at Kaiser Zion and the labor and delivery where fine. However, after the baby was born it was like I was living a nightmare. Most of the nurses didn't speak english, I'm sure the room I had to share was originally intended to be a single person room that they had just run a curtain through and split into 2. My husband was not allowed to spend the night, there was no where for my friends and family to sit while visiting because my side of the room too small for even a chair. I was told that I had to take the baby with me into the restroom while I went or showered because they were not responsible for watching it.

This was my first child so I didn't have any idea what to expect or sadly even what to do with the newborn baby, and I really felt like I was on my own. As a matter of fact I ended up developing postpardom depression and I swear it started right there in that hospital in the middle of the night as I lied there alone (most certainly disturbing the woman in the bed 2 feet from me), my husband had been sent home, the nurses were non-responsive, my baby was crying and I was crying along with her as I tried in vain to comfort her. I could go on and on... but you get the picture.

I had been with Kaiser for most of my life. After that expertience I quickly changed
insurance providers. I had my second baby girl at Sharp Mary Birch and it was like night and day. It was a wonderful experience. Everyone was helpful, my husband stayed the entire time and the staff was very caring and supportive.

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