And How to Pay For It
How much does a homebirth cost ?
How much does a midwife cost ?
Can I afford it ?
Will the insurance cover it ?
Those are the questions which often pop into a woman's mind the minute she decides to have a homebirth.
Homebirth is considerably less expensive than having birth at the birthing center and hospital. As opposed to hospital birth which costs somewhere between 6000-10,000 dollars for vaginal birth, homebirth costs anywhere between 1500-3000 dollars. This also means that homebirth is also cheaper than giving birth at the birthing center which can cost anywhere between 3500-5000 dollars.
Here is the breakdown of the homebirth cost:
- Midwife fee which is usually between 1500-3000 dollars. This fee covers prenatal care, birth, postpartum check up, newborn check up and screening.
- Lab test which costs maximum of 100 dollars.
- Ultrasound which costs 100-200 dollars. In my case, I did not pay for my ultrasound because my midwife happens to own an ultrasound machine which she rents to somebody to operate it.
- Birth supplies.
- Water tub rent, unless your midwife provides this for free.
Paying For Your Homebirth
As you can see, the bulk of the homebirth cost lies on midwife fee. Here are what people do to pay for their midwife fee:
- Pay in full by cash before the birth if the person does not have any maternity insurance, or if the insurance does not cover her homebirth.
- Pay a reduced fee by bartering a service with the midwife. A midwife often reduces the price if somebody is willing to barter something with her which can include things from painting her house and fixing her car to babysit her children. In fact, some moms managed to have free homebirths because they can barter a service or goods which are equivalent to the midwife cost.
- Pay through insurance. Some maternity insurance cover homebirth in full, some don't cover at all, some cover a fraction of it.
I understand that many moms are in the situation where it will be cheaper to have a traditional hospital birth compared to homebirth just because their insurance is going to cover all or the bulk of hospital birth. However, if you are leaning towards a homebirth, I encourage you to find a way to have one. I'm sure if you tell your financial situation to your midwife, she will work out a flexible plan for you or even reduce the midwife fee if you can offer something to her in return.
Having a homebirth is worth it because childbirth is one of the big family event and hence it should be a personal, intimate, peaceful and joyful event. What you will get from a homebirth, in my opinion, is priceless. It gives you an empowerment you will never see again and of course, happy unforgettable memory.
Therefore, homebirth cost should never hinder somebody to have a homebirth.
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