It’s expensive to give birth in Massachusetts, but it’s not the most expensive state, according to a new tracker.
FAIR Health launched its Cost of Giving Birth Tracker, which is described as a free, interactive tool tracking the cost of giving birth state by state. The tracker shows state-specific and national median charge and allowed (in-network) amounts for vaginal deliveries and C-sections.
The tool uses FAIR Health’s database of over 41 billion private healthcare claim records, according to a press release.
In Massachusetts, the amount charged to a patient giving birth who is uninsured or obtaining an out-of-network service can cost about $28,888 for a vaginal delivery or $31,163 for a C-section.
“If you don’t have health insurance, you can expect to pay a much higher cost for pregnancy, birth and postpartum care,” Forbes wrote. “Without insurance, you’re responsible for all your medical expenses during pregnancy and after birth.”
For those in the commonwealth who are insured, the numbers are different.
The tracker includes the total fee negotiated between an insurance plan and a provider for an in-network service. This means the number includes both the portion to be paid by the plan member and the portion to be paid by the insurance plan.
For vaginal deliveries in Massachusetts, it could cost about $16,731. And for C-sections it could cost about $16,917.
Forbes estimated the average out-of-pocket costs for childbirth in Massachusetts is about $1,421 for vaginal deliveries and $1,451 for C-sections.
Overall, Massachusetts ranks fifth for the state with the highest median allowed amount for vaginal deliveries.
In Connecticut, those numbers are even higher. But it’s not the highest in the U.S.
According to the tracker, Alaska has the highest median in-network amount for a vaginal delivery, costing about $21,525.
Alaska also has high out-of-pocket costs. Forbes reported the average out-of-pocket costs for childbirth in Alaska is about $2,388 for vaginal deliveries and $2,692 for C-sections.
The national median allowed amount for vaginal delivery is $12,968.44, and the national median charge amount is $27,371.88.
“FAIR Health is pleased to shine a light onto the costs of giving birth from state to state and nationally. With the Cost of Giving Birth Tracker, we once again use our vast data repository to inform healthcare stakeholders— including patients, policy makers, payors and providers — on issues that matter to them,” FAIR Health President Robin Gelburd said.
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