How Much Does Baby Delivery Cost?
Because of the wide range of issues concerning child birth, the cost for something like this can only be estimated. There are many things that can have an effect on the actually cost, such as whether it was a vaginal birth or Cesarean; whether or not there were any kind of complications; whether or not the mother received an epidural; whether the mother’s room is private or shared; and many other factors. Although the cost of some of these things can be discussed before the birth of the baby, others can only be guessed and the total bill may be much different from what you expected.
How much does it cost to have a baby?
- A natural child birth with no complications will cost anywhere from $8,000 to $16,000. This price depends on the hospital, part of the country (cost of living), and health of the baby.
- A child birth by way of Cesarean will cost anywhere from $12,000 to $24,000. This price also depends on the hospital and part of the country, but also the reason for the Cesarean delivery.
- Most insurance companies cover the cost of child birth, but the family will usually have to pay a copay (usually 5-20%) or deductible (usually $1,000-$3,000). Those with insurance pay only a small percentage of the figures discussed above.
- According to this forum thread on the website BabyCenter.com, users claimed that their baby delivery cost ranged anywhere from $1,500 with insurance to as much as $35,000 with complications.
What is going to be included?
- This cost includes the mother’s time in the labor and delivery as well as the actual birth of the child.
- Also included is the newborn’s stay in the nursery for approximately 2 nights. This depends on the time of day the baby was born, if there were any complications, and the health of the mother.
- A 1-2 night stay for the mother is typical, with all meals included in the price.
- A routine check-up by the pediatrician will be performed before the baby leaves the hospital.
- All the formula and diapers for the baby are included during his stay at the hospital. Many times the hospital sends you home with a bad of extras as well!
What are the extra costs?
- In some cases, the mother is given a drug called pitocin to help the delivery progress a little faster. This is many times an additional cost.
- If the mother chooses to receive an epidural she will be charged for it.
- If there are any complications with the mother or the child, the cost will increase greatly.
- While many hospitals only have private rooms available, some hospitals have private and semi-private (shared with one other family). In this case, the private room will be more expensive.
- If the child is a boy and is going to be circumcised, there will be an extra charge for that procedure.
Tips to know:
- Take a tour of the hospital before the pregnancy begins. This is going to give you the opportunity to see what the hospital can offer, what the nurses are like and can give you a good feel on what the hospital layout is like.
- Consider taking classes through the hospital before the delivery. These classes can help with preparations, tours of the hospital, as well as exercises such as breathing techniques to make the delivery as smooth as possible.
- You may want to talk with your health insurance provider before giving birth. Depending on the insurance carrier’s policy, some may want to be notified ahead of time.
Baby delivery questions to ask:
- When should I come into the hospital? What do you recommend?
- How long will it take for my primary health provider to see me?
- Will my birth plan always be honored?
- What exactly is allowed during my labor?
- How many people can come into the room while giving birth?
- What are the restrictions when giving birth?
- How long will I probably stay in the hospital?
- If the birth is healthy, how long will the baby have to remain in the hospital?
How can I save money?
- The best way to save money on child birth is to pay cash. Many hospitals will take much less money for services rendered if the patient is able to pay cash up front.
- There are many government helps available to those who are not insured.
- Be sure to know what your insurance is going to cover. You’re going to want to talk with your insurance company before the process even begins. It’s common to find out that policies such as self employment ones don’t cover maternity procedures.
- If you’re thinking about getting health insurance, you may want to think again. What you’re going to find out is that some health insurance riders are a lot more expensive than you think. Do the math to see if it’s truly worth it.
- If paying out of pocket without insurance, be sure to talk with the hospital. Many can offer a discount for those that either meet a certain annual income, or for those that pay up front. Full cash payment scan save you up to 60%.
- A hypnobirth or a midwife can be a great alternative. These types of births are very affordable and most will work with your budget. Aside from a midwife, you may also want to consider a birthing center rather than a hospital setting.
How can I compare prices?
- Most hospitals can give you a price sheet of everything that is, or could be, included in child birth costs. However, since the health of mom and baby is the most important thing, the cost should not be your only concern!
- Most people have access to more than one hospital within a reasonable distance from their homes. This allows the mother-to-be the opportunity to call around and compare prices before the baby comes.