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Baby Insurance After Birth Question & Answers

2014 April 29
by Sarah Fields

Daniel asks…

Why would an insurance company advise against a birthing center?

My friend’s insurance company advised against a birthing center birth, as opposed to a hospital birth. She believes this was truly just the representative’s opinion. I do medical billing and told her that there are several reasons why they would advise against it (ie, the additional costs should she need to be transferred to a traditional hospital, their discounted rates with hospitals, the higher possibilities of something going wrong, etc), but she seems to think that’s all hogwash. Any opinions?

Sarah Fields answers:

Birthing centers are not equiped to handle emergencies. If something goes wrong they have to call 911 just like everyone else and the mother and baby have to be driven by ambulance to a hospital. The delay in care can cost mother or baby their life.
HOWEVER 99% of pregnancies go off without a hitch. As long as she is low risk and the ultrasounds show a healthy normal baby there is no reason not to use a birth center, they are great! She will not have access to pain meds tho, which may or may not be a deal breaker.

She can still have a good experience giving birth at a hospital, tell her to look into hiring a doula either place she decides to have the baby.

Lisa asks…

How long do I have to wait after a c section to try for a natural birth?

I really wanted to have my baby vaginally, but I went through 35+ hours of labor and ended up with a c section…I’ve heard you have to wait 18 months afterwards so you can safely try to naturally deliver…I just want to know if anyone else has had a different experience.

Sarah Fields answers:

Good for you! YES, you CAN have a Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC) and don’t listen to anyone who tells you different, ESPECIALLY the doctors. I have delivered many babies for women who have had one OR MORE cesareans. In fact, one lady had three cesareans and went on to have two vaginal births. There are records of women who have had vaginal births following up to 7 cesareans. This however is pretty rare, and you would be hard-pressed to find anyone willing to help, so by all means go for a vaginal birth with your very next pregnancy.

Ok, here is the scoop on WHY all doctors and hospitals are now discouraging VBAC. It is NOT because of any increased risk (the risks are extremely small if: your incision was a low-transverse, double-layered sutures, and your next baby is due at least 18 months following your section.) The real reason is mal-practice insurance companies changed their policies on VBACS, making it mandatory (for insurance coverage) that hospitals have an anesthesiologist on-site when a VBAC mom is in labor (most hospitals had this already), and (this was the death-blow for VBAC’s) that your obstetrician has to remain in the hospital with you the whole time you are in labor. OB’s don’t do this. They may drop in occasionally if their office is near, but generally they don’t show up until you are pushing. Sit around and wait for hours and hours? When they could be playing golf, working in their office, or sleeping? I don’t think so!

For years doctors were encouraging VBAC’s for pregnant women. At first they were cautious and pretty much let nature take its course. VBAC’s became common-place. With it’s proven track record for safety (and lets remember that c-sections are not risk-free), doctors forgot the very slight increased risks and got impatient. Doctors started using more and more interventions on these laboring moms, things that increased the risk of uterine rupture, like inducing with pitocin, or even worse, Cytotec, augmenting labor with drugs, using forceps or vacuum extraction, etc. These are the no-no’s that someone with any uterine scar needs to avoid.

VBAC’s did not suddenly become riskier than they had been, doctors just started doing some things that increased risks, things that increase risks with all births. For example, if a pregnant woman who has never had a c-section is induced with the drug Cytotec she is much more likely to have a uterine rupture than a woman who has had a cesarean but who labors naturally.

Your only problem will be finding a caregiver and support for your decison. I would do some serious reading NOW, not when you get pregnant again. Find out what your alternatives are now. I will list some resources.

Good luck!

Claudine, CPM, LM

Sharon asks…

How to get my baby health insurance?

So I am having a baby within the next few months. I am covered under my dad’s health insurance because I am still under 26. I don’t live with my dad though. I currently live with my fiance and my one year old son. My son is on fidelis/medicaid. Is there any way I can get my baby covered before I deliver her?

Sarah Fields answers:

When I had my son, it transfered over and my mother’s insurancebsent me a card for him. He is also on medicaid and they sent one when he was born. As far as before she is born, no. She would be covered under you til birth. After that insurance should begin covering right away even if you don’t have a card.

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