American Way of Birth, Costliest in the World

Elisabeth Rosenthal, New York Times, June 30, 2013

Seven months pregnant, at a time when most expectant couples are stockpiling diapers and choosing car seats, Renée Martin was struggling with bigger purchases.

At a prenatal class in March, she was told about epidural anesthesia and was given the option of using a birthing tub during labor. To each offer, she had one gnawing question: “How much is that going to cost?”

Though Ms. Martin, 31, and her husband, Mark Willett, are both professionals with health insurance, her current policy does not cover maternity care. {snip}

When she became pregnant, Ms. Martin called her local hospital inquiring about the price of maternity care; the finance office at first said it did not know, and then gave her a range of $4,000 to $45,000. “It was unreal,” Ms. Martin said. “I was like, How could you not know this? You’re a hospital.”

{snip}

Like Ms. Martin, plenty of other pregnant women are getting sticker shock in the United States, where charges for delivery have about tripled since 1996, according to an analysis done for The New York Times by Truven Health Analytics. Childbirth in the United States is uniquely expensive, and maternity and newborn care constitute the single biggest category of hospital payouts for most commercial insurers and state Medicaid programs. {snip}

And though maternity care costs far less in other developed countries than it does in the United States, studies show that their citizens do not have less access to care or to high-tech care during pregnancy than Americans.

{snip}

{snip} In 2011, 62 percent of women in the United States covered by private plans that were not obtained through an employer lacked maternity coverage, like Ms. Martin. But even many women with coverage are feeling the pinch as insurers demand higher co-payments and deductibles and exclude many pregnancy-related services.

From 2004 to 2010, the prices that insurers paid for childbirth—one of the most universal medical encounters—rose 49 percent for vaginal births and 41 percent for Caesarean sections in the United States, with average out-of-pocket costs rising fourfold, according to a recent report by Truven that was commissioned by three health care groups. The average total price charged for pregnancy and newborn care was about $30,000 for a vaginal delivery and $50,000 for a C-section, with commercial insurers paying out an average of $18,329 and $27,866, the report found.

{snip}

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  • FourFooted_Messiah

    My mother flat out told me that if Canada didn’t introduce universal health care (that was supposed to be for us, not for the whole world, you marxist dorks), I would have never have been born – and that if I had been a boy, I wouldn’t be alive now, either.

    But she was a weird Murphy Brown long before that character was dreamed up. Haven’t called home in a while, have no idea of anyone’s status, black sheep are like that.

    • IstvanIN

      Thank goodness you were a girl. How in heaven’s name did your mom get married if she hated males so much?

      • Murphy Brown was a single mother.

        • IstvanIN

          A tramp.

          • FourFooted_Messiah

            Yes, but remember Murphy Brown was financially independent. If she wanted a kid, and didn’t ask the dad to cough up anything, I guess it’s her business. Crap, I’d rather have Ms Brown as a mom than what I did have.

          • IstvanIN

            I am sorry your mother wasn’t a very nice lady. But I am a firm believer that a child needs a mother and father, married, who respect each other. I know it doesn’t always work out that way, but I still think that is the best way to raise children. Good luck to you and God Bless.

      • FourFooted_Messiah

        She didn’t. Technically, I carry my grandfather’s name, which is actually my great-grandmother’s name, because my great-grandad took her name for reasons unknown. I only found that bit out recently through internet digging through old county records.

    • sbuffalonative

      You escaped and you’re thriving on your own. That’s all that matters now. We can’t pick our families but we can leave,

      • FourFooted_Messiah

        Oh, indeed.

  • Viking_61

    As a white man I am going to start walking into my local emergency room and see what happens when I demand free medical care like all of the Mexicans.

    The waiting room at my local hospital looks like Guadalajara Mexico, and I am sure none of these invaders ever have to pay a cent.

    Can you imagine an AmRen-reading race realist like myself bickering with hospital staff over the bill for my emergency room visit for a sore throat?

    What if while I am arguing with the hospital staff I point over to one of the 5’1″ Mexicans and ask why he gets free medical treatment as a foreign national, in this country illegally nonetheless, but as an American I am being hounded for payment.

    • JohnEngelman

      Twice I went to the emergency room of a hospital without health insurance. Each time I had to pay about $3,000 dollars. I did have to pay it, even though the second time I was unemployed.

      I doubt they would have waived the amount if I was black or Hispanic. I think a number of posters here overestimate the generosity of the welfare system.

      • pcmustgo

        engelman, the Mexican would give a fake name so he wouldn’t have to pay it.

      • Nathanwartooth

        Um, why did you pay that?

        If you were unemployed you could have gotten it waived easily. You just tell them you can’t pay and they will send you the paper work you need to fill out.

      • IstvanIN

        How would they get it from them? A lien? Ruin their credit? Come on now, the threats that work on us don’t work on us.

    • sbuffalonative

      Maybe you could get free health care if you learned Spanish.

    • Erasmus

      The waiting room at my local hospital looks like Guadalajara Mexico, and I am sure none of these invaders ever have to pay a cent.

      If they had to pay, those Lupitas and Maria Luisas wouldn’t be popping out children like cockroaches.

      • MikeofAges

        Maybe not. Maybe they would return to traditional forms of childbirth and just accept the greater risks that come with it.

    • rightrightright

      Because he can disappear into the illegal swamp and come out again as somebody else while you, with your orderly paperwork, employment and tax records, can always be found.

    • gemjunior

      “The waiting room at my local hospital looks like Guadalajara Mexico, and I am sure none of these invaders ever have to pay a cent. ”
      I know exactly what that looks like, and that’s why I moved. But it seems they just osmose into every area that doesn’t have them, bit by bit. So there seems to be nowhere to go. The waiting room? Rows and rows of useless looking, helpless retarded adults that just stare incompetently while their droves of kids tear up the place. One thing they’re good at is having a baby once a year. That vacuous stare, and in the men it’s tinged with some sort of rude attitude.

  • hanfeedback

    The best thing whites can do is get on the system also. Collect welfare, go without insurance, work off the books etc.

    • Viking_61

      Starve the beast.

      • Rick Brooks

        Sort of a reverse Cloward-Piven stategy…

    • pcmustgo

      I agree. Two can play that game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • pcmustgo

        I mean, ONLY if it’s such a struggle being a normal middle class worker that you “can’t afford” to have a baby.

    • Erasmus

      Although I’m a strong believer in marriage, I am starting to think marriage should be done off the books so one can get EITC and all those other freebies we give to baby mommies.

      • stewball

        In my country the government gives
        money after we ghave a baby. Well they did 40 years ago.

  • IstvanIN

    This is odd. My work insurance has always covered pregnancy and child birth. They force employers to cover birth control and abortion, but not birth? What a demented society we live in.

    • The__Bobster

      Because the elites don’t want us to breed.

    • Part of the reason is thanks to the John Edwards type ambulance chasers, the malpractice liability for OB/GYNs has gone through the roof.

      • IstvanIN

        True, my dermatologist started out as a obstetrician but went into dermatology because the insurance was so high that it was more probable to make less money and pay less insurance.

  • Spartacus

    And then these scum have the nerve to tell white people “If you have a problem with blacks or mexicans, have more babies.” Whites would have more babies, if they didn’t have to pay for other races’ “children” !

    • Sick of it

      I saw a liberal complaining about this on another board. Apparently he didn’t realize that welfare was started by the Democrats. But wth do they know, not being people who read.

  • The__Bobster

    The average total price charged for pregnancy and newborn care was about $30,000 for a vaginal delivery and $50,000 for a C-section, with commercial insurers paying out an average of $18,329 and $27,866, the report found.
    _________

    That’s a lot of moolah for something that’s supposed to be natural. I suspect that the cost is so high because we have to pay the freight for ugly brown squat monster breeders.

    • bigone4u

      That’s what happens to cost when the federal government gets involved. When the feds touch anything it turns to ****.

  • bigone4u

    I’ve been told by local south Texas medical experts that Mexican women always choose C-section, which is more expensive. Let me try to explain why without offending the moderator. My friends in medicine tell me that the primary interest of the Hispanic ladies is to remain “tight” down there. Natural birth makes for loose; C-section makes for tight. Or so I’ve been told. Hope I did not offend anyone, but the motivations are important and if they don’t have to pay the extra cost of C-section, then they’ll do it.

    • Romulus

      That’s not offensive in the slightest! The skin and body can only stretch so far.!!

    • evilsandmich

      I once had a white coworker who did only C-section because she thought that natural birth would ruin her breasts. I dunno; she was married to a black guy BTW.

    • stewball

      I had a natural birth with both my children. They cut so you don’t tear and stitch you up afterwards. Glad you don’t give birth gentlemen?

    • My friends in medicine tell me that the primary interest of the Hispanic ladies is to remain “tight” down there.

      They think this because the dad’s and uncles know that the non-physically mature 12 year old daughter is tighter than the mom that squeezed out a couple of kids in a shack in Mexico.

    • ms_anthro

      Preposterous, when you think about it. So the male anatomy can expand significantly and then retract as needed, sometimes many times daily, but a woman’s body can’t similarly stretch and then contract again in nine months or more? This is the sort of discourse I expect from 40-year-old virgins and teenage boys.

      But I’m not at all surprised this is what people who live in corrugated tin shacks on the sides of volcanoes believe.

  • From 2004 to 2010, the prices that insurers paid for childbirth—one of
    the most universal medical encounters—rose 49 percent for vaginal births
    and 41 percent for Caesarean sections in the United States

    You can partially thank John “Two Americas” Edwards for that.

  • Rick Brooks

    We Whites need to game the system more often because we’re the only ones losing in the baby making derby right now. If unemployed Don’Queesha from the hood can have three illegitimate kids by three different “baby dadies” and “undocumented” Marisol can waddle to the nearest hospital and drop off one of her little anchors, we can too!!

    • Sick of it

      I’d rather shut down the welfare system and start dismantling our bloated government personally.

    • Sloppo

      Why not just have a bunch of babies with the same partner you are committed to? Does a mother have to be a whore to get government assistance for childbirth expenses? It’s not a rhetorical question. I’m asking because I really don’t know.

  • MekongDelta69

    “Elisabeth Rosenthal, New York Times”.

    You know what pablum I got out of skimming that feminazi article?
    “Though Ms. Martin, 31, and her husband…”

    No you idiot PC lib – it’s NOT ‘Ms.’ It’s “Mrs.

    • IstvanIN

      Though Ms. Martin, 31, and her husband, Mark Willett
      Rosenthal is correct, she is a Ms. since her name is not Mrs. Willett.

  • pcmustgo

    Just declare bankruptcy afterwards… don’t let that stop you from giving birth, especially if “everyone else” is not paying

    • evilsandmich

      “I was like, How could you not know this? You’re a hospital.”

      How it goes is: “how much does this cost?”/”how much you got?”
      If [when] they send you a crazy invoice you just tell them that you’re not paying that. Rinse, lather, repeat until they give you an amount that you feel like paying.

  • WR_the_realist

    Nobody has higher medical malpractice insurance rates than obstetricians. After all, if there is *any* problem with the baby, even if the mother was downing a bottle of vodka every day, the doctor gets sued, and the payouts are enormous. I suspect you’ll find that that is why maternity care costs so much in the United States.

    • sbuffalonative

      My mother told the story that when my older brother was born, the doctor was listening to a baseball game on the radio. Could you imagine the payout she would be entitled to today if anything went wrong?

      Also, I read a piece in US Today where a man had his records of his birth. The cost was under $100 and involved only an over night stay.

      Insurance companies and the ever present threat of lawsuits have driven up the cost of giving birth.

  • Sick of it

    Water births at home could be the answer. Why try to give birth in the worst position imaginable surrounded by disease, filth, and non-white employees who hate you?

    • Spartacus

      I agree with this^

    • sbuffalonative

      I wouldn’t want to put my wife or child at risk but giving birth, in most cases, isn’t major surgery and it shouldn’t cost as much. I think doctors and hospitals see pregnant women as cash cows.

    • ms_anthro

      This is the answer for low-risk pregnancies. If you want surgery, see a surgeon (an OBGYN). If you want a natural birth, see a qualified midwife and a doula.

  • sbuffalonative

    Full disclosure. I’m not nor have I ever been a woman.
    I understand that death rates for mother and child were higher before the advent of modern maternal care (and the prices jacked up by insurance companies) but really, do women need all these accouterments?
    I mean, birth is a natural process. Surely women haven’t evolved so quickly that only modern medicine can now successfully deliver babies.
    Saturday Night Live did a sketch a long time ago relating to this subject as to what was the perfect device need to carry a baby after she was born.
    Are all these things really needed or have women fallen for medical marketing?

    • Sick of it

      Excepting epidurals and when complications occur, hospitals don’t do anything more than a midwife could at home. Midwives are apparently more capable than doctors at dealing with breach babies. The traditional terms butcher and sawbones were not intended as compliments.

    • Spartacus

      99% of all births that go wrong, either for the mother or the child, is a result the mother not taking care of herself during pregnancy – not eating properly, drinking and smoking, making too much physical effort, making too little physical effort, etc. If all these things were done right, then problems would be very rare.

  • IstvanIN

    Good for you! And congratulations!

  • Funruffian

    I had my 2nd child in 2001 which was right before the prenatal and delivery expenses tripled. No more babies for me.

  • The g Factor

    If hospital and medical costs are so high in the United States how come the infant mortality rates are some of the worst in the First World?

    • Rusty Shackelford

      I think it has to do with differences in how they determine what gets counted as infant mortality. I think the US is more inclusive in their determination, so it’s not always apples to apples.

    • ms_anthro

      Iatrogenic injuries, mostly. And MRSA. I suggest watching the documentary, The Business of Being Born.

      • The g Factor

        This only raises the question – Why would “iatrogenic injuries and MRSA” what they are be worse in the US than in say Britain, Australia or Scandanavia?

  • Spartacus

    Keep up the good work ! 🙂

  • Alucard_the_last

    I lived in San Francisco, Seattle and NYC which are amongst the most expensive cities in America. The only people who can afford to have children are welfare whores and the rich. This is really pathetic. This nation needs welfare overhaul big time. I think people who pay into the system for decades just to be turned down at the welfare office is a crime. Meanwhile, little miss welfare whore runs to the welfare office the second it get pregnant just to stay on welfare for the next 18 years.

  • MikeofAges

    ” …. life has been enveloped by what is the articifical, manuipulative, and massively deceptive.” All part of the attack on the ‘blood and soil’ concept of culture. Credit the “hippies” of the 1960s with putting this issue in the mainstream. Other embrace it also.