There are a lot of expenses that go along with having a child, and many of them occur before they are even born. The cost of prenatal and maternal care has never been higher. According to a study done by Kaiser between 2003 and 2005 showed that the average cost of having a baby is about $8000. The study also showed that about 1/3 of the births during that time were cesarean, which increased the cost considerably. There is definitely a need for insurance during pregnancy.
Many women don’t think that they need health insurance for maternity because they have no real “plans” for having babies, but most people are fully aware that pregnancies can happen by accident and that if you aren’t covered, you will be in a world of hurt. Basically, if you are of the age when you can get pregnant, then you should have the appropriate medical coverage just in case you do.
With rising costs, even those who have insurance already often buy extra maternity coverage. This is a good idea, especially for those whose primary insurance does not cover all of the costs of maternal care. Even with good coverage, a second policy can help pay for the co pay and out of pocket expenses left over from the primary insurance. Maternity care normally has a unique set of circumstances with each insurance company as to what is covered.
Increasing Current Policy
If possible, increase the benefits to a current insurance policy. This isn’t always allowed, but it is worth investigating. If at all possible, try to increase coverage before pregnancy. Extra coverage especially helps if there are unexpected costs due to the pregnancy such as health problems for mother or child, or a cesarean birth. Just the cost of the birthing center alone, with no complications, and excluding prenatal care is upwards of $3000.
Know the Policy
There are a variety of plans available with insurance, and all with different coverage. Plan whether an increased deductable may be worth added coverage, or if saving on the deductible is worth the higher premiums. Planning out an outline of income and debt helps to see how much can be afforded for insurance, especially if considering getting a second insurance policy. Getting extra insurance doesn’t help if the premiums aren’t paid.
In some cases, additions to insurance policies or “riders” are available for a fee. A maternity rider, for example, may pay extra for fees incurred with prenatal and postnatal care. In some rare cases, just the riders are available through a second insurance policy. Only through investigation can this be discovered. Most insurance companies do not advertise what is included in coverage. These riders can help a great deal to fray costs.
Make sure the maternity insurance covers fees such as lab, radiology and outpatient drugs (or prescriptions). These costs amount to approximately 17% of maternity costs. They can add up quickly. Most insurance policies have some sort of prescription plan, but find out if it can be better. Prenatal vitamins cost an average of 40c a day, which adds up quickly. Ultrasounds cost between $200-$1000 at hospitals.
Remember, there will have to be plenty of money left after the baby is born, so finding maternity insurance to cut the out of pocket expenses is wise. Overall, a few more dollars on increased insurance, or a second policy will still save money compared to the average costs incurred for prenatal and postnatal care.
There are many times when you absolutely have to be covered by health insurance. Young children need coverage, older people need coverage, and perhaps most importantly, pregnant women need it, too. You probably would not believe the cost of having a baby these days, from the very first pre-natal tests to the final post-natal check-ups, and everything in between. It can cost tens of thousands of dollars for a delivery.
Having health insurance maternity coverage before you ever get pregnant is the best thing you can do. Most insurance policies will not cover you if you initialize the policy after you know that you are pregnant. In addition, they will usually have a waiting period during which time pregnancy would not be covered. So, it cannot be stressed enough that you should find health insurance maternity coverage before you start planning for a family – just in case!
Unfortunately, many women are not covered by Medicare and they find themselves paying out of pocket for their pregnancy. This can bankrupt any family, and that is no way to get started building your family. The other alternative that many women choose is to not undergo necessary check-ups or tests that would ensure the health of themselves and their baby. This is not something that you want to do.
So, it is important that any family that is anticipating getting pregnant should seriously consider finding health insurance maternity coverage sooner rather than later. Although the price may seem high, it is much less than having to pay out of pocket for every test and every check-up that you and the baby will go through during the pre- and post-natal periods. For the health of you and your child, having the best health insurance possible is one of the most important things that you can do with your money.
Health insurance is one of those things that is virtually mandatory these days. Should something happen to you, even if it is just minor, and you don’t have health insurance, it can virtually send you right into bankruptcy. The cost of even the most basic health care is outrageous right now, and one visit to the doctor without health insurance can be shocking.
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