I absolutely love being a midwife! If we didn’t have to feed this growing family, put gas in our car, pay for a roof over our head, use electricity, and have a smart phone / internet service along with all of the things that have to be kept in order to stay in constant contact with clients, I would be able to practice Midwifery for free. That would be a dream but, unfortunately, this is not the life we live. Midwifery care is not aways covered in the same way as standard obstetrics care.
I’m often asked how people can afford to have a midwife. It's definitely a luxury for some households, especially with the fees that we charge to provide this service. Curious about the cost? Find out what all is included in the home birth fee. Please understand that home birth charges are quite small in comparison to a hospital birth. However, I do understand that it does not come without sacrifice for some families.
I want to talk a little today about how some families afford to have a home birth.
I’m often contacted from mothers after their first baby about what home birth is like. Often families discover that a hospital birth was not a good fit for them. If you are looking into home birth and it’s something that you believe is a possibility for your future, I would suggest starting a savings account now for future babies.
2. PRIVATE INSURANCE
Private insurance does not typically pay for out of hospital midwifery care in Mississippi. Call them now before you get pregnant to find out if they provide coverage. Ask them if they have coverage for a non-nurse out of hospital home birth midwife in an unregulated state. If they do, great! Within my practice, you will still be responsible for all of your fees upfront before your birth. At the end of your care you will receive an insurance invoice (complete with appropriate billing codes) that you will be able to submit for reimbursement. If they require additional paperwork or signatures we will work with you, not your insurance company directly.
Currently in the state of Mississippi, Medicaid does not provide reimbursement for families who select out of hospital midwifery care for their babies. People often ask if I accept Medicaid. If they would pay me, I would. I am hopeful for a day when our government officials recognize the benefits of midwifery care and breastfeeding outcomes for women with limited resources. Until then, I continue to keep fees as reasonably priced as possible for all families.
Long ago people would often trade midwifery care for eggs, milk, or time worked in the Midwives garden, etc. In today's society, bartering is often looked it as a thing of the past. Personally, I love a good barter! If you are looking into midwifery care and have a service or product, that might be something that we can barter. I am always open to offering fair market price in exchange for the care that I provide to families. Here's a list of items that would be beneficial to our family and suitable for bartering.
Help with fencing, tree cutting, tiler work, chicken coop building, dog grooming, dirt work, dog training, turtle cage cleaning, house cleaning, hair cuts, chickens, goats, rabbits, fresh organic foods, weeding, painting, car repair, handy man services, and other things that rural life sometimes demands. If you have something to offer and you’re looking into midwifery care, let’s talk about it.
Some families ask for home birth midwifery care as their gift from families and friends. When you get pregnant everybody wants to give you all the things that they think are perfect and right for you. If midwifery care is what you want, put that on the registry! If you are having a baby shower, gender reveal, or other type party (whether virtual or in person) contact me and I'll be happy to give info on how your family and friends can add money to your midwifery account.
Crowdfunding sites have become a social media beast. We spend so much time on social media connecting with family, friends, and even meeting new friends. I have seen a rise in people using platforms like Go Fund Me to raise funds for their own personal medical care. I recently actually saw a family who raised funds for their midwifery care and were able to get everything they needed plus a little extra for a car seat. Sometimes you have to be a bit creative to determine how to afford the care you really want.
7. HEALTH SPENDING ACCOUNTS
Some families have used flexible spending accounts (FSA) and healthcare spending accounts (HSA) to pay for their midwifery care. Please contact me about how you can make a payment with your FSA/HSA card or check towards healthcare for your and your new baby.
8. CREDIT CARDS
You might also look into paying for your midwifery care with a credit card or a personal bank loan. Just be careful about signing up for something with a high interest rate. Opening a low-interest account or taking advantage of a special is how some families pay for their home birth. Sometimes opening a new credit card will give you a special cash back offer so be on the lookout for those deals!
At some point, we all find ourselves with too much of one thing or not enough of something else. Some families find it effective to raise money for their home birth by getting rid of things that they no longer need, use, can't fit, or forgot they had around the house. Consider a yard sale, putting things on Craigslist, or utilizing Buy-Sell-Trade pages. This is a great way to make some extra funds to pay for your upcoming home birth and it helps make room for baby!
10. BE CREATIVE!
Figure out something that will generate funds short term. Maybe a second job, babysitting, house cleaning, holiday decorating (I sure could use this one), personal shopping, and more. The list can go on and on.
I would love to hear what worked for you! Drop it in the comments or send me a message.
No matter how you decide to pay for your Midwifery care, you will see that it does take a little planning. Start early to figure out how you will be able to pay for the care that you and your baby both deserve. For my clients, I also offer payment plans that can be spaced throughout your pregnancy so that you can start receiving midwifery care right away.
Contact me today to schedule a complimentary consultation to learn more about home birth.
Musings of a Traditional Midwife in Northeast Mississippi