In a recent post I told my crazy labor story. Of course I was to have a healthy baby and no major medial issues for either of us. But I kept wondering if things would have been less chaotic for us if we'd been in a birth center instead of a hospital. My labor nurse and midwife were excellent and my husband was a first-rate labor coach. But since I was at a hospital, I was constantly being poked and probed and monitored in ways that I felt disrupted my (hellacious back) labor. I'd chosen a hospital birth because it just seemed like the safest choice, and my insurance would cover it.
Hopefully, the latest study on birth centers will change how we all see birth centers, and their affordability. More and more expecting moms are choosing to deliver at midwife-led birth centers. And it turns out, not only are they a lot safer than you'd think, they're also surprisingly affordable.
The American Association of Birth Center's study looked at 15,500 women planning for a birth-center birth in 33 states (and 79 different centers) from 2007-2010. Here's what they found.
Of course, for us moms, that doesn't matter unless our insurance is covering that birth. Fortunately, the new Affordable Health Care Act mandates coverage for birth centers across the U.S. If more moms choose a birth center birth over a hospital birth, it could save Americans and insurance companies a lot of money. Best of all, moms and babies get high-quality care at birth centers.
Did you give birth at a birth center instead of a hospital? What was your experience like?
Image via eyeliam/Flickr