Public or Private Patient to have a baby?

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June06 Posts: 264
Hi Girls, Can anyone help me. I am not pregnant yet but am planning on starting to try. What I want to know is what are the costs involved if you are a private patient. I have Bupa health insurance what do they really cover? In your honest opinion do you think its better to go as a public or private patient for maternity? Thanks in advance for your help, June06
Trish07 Posts: 506
Hi June06, Im going as a public patient even though I have maternity cover through vhi. The reason for this is that I couldnt really justify paying 2-3 grand for a consultant who may or may not even attend the birth. As far as I know bupa/vhi cover the accomodation cost in hospital and give about 300euro towards consultants fees. If you end up staying in hospital longer than expected you will have a bigger bill, you also need to pay for any blood tests taken whilst in hospital. I have 5weeks left til due date and cant really fault the care I have been given as public patient, saying that though I have had a very straightforward pregnancy and would have considered myself to know abit about pregnancy before hand. I have really just been left to get on with it and Im happy about that.
Sparklymum Posts: 1563
Hi June a perspective from the other side of the fence. I'm six months into my pregnancy and attending my Obst. privately. I have complications and feel more confident knowing that the same Dr. is dealing with my case all the time and is responsible for making all the decisions in relation to my case. I also will need a c-section and he will be performing that. My Dr's Fees are €2500.00 and I will get I think its €500 back from BUPA against those. The remainder I will offset against my taxes for 2007 which will claw back another €400 so the net cost will be €1400.00. One thing to note though is even though I'm a private patient, I will only get a private bed if one is available for me when I am admitted to hospital, a private ward is not guaranteed. Depending on the Dr. you choose the fees can be anything from €2-4K, I know someone attending another obst paying €4,000.00 she has 3d or 4d scans at every visit and all of those are inclusive in his price, so it depends on the Dr. you choose and what you want from them. I just wanted consistent care from one specialist, the normal scans are enough for me and should he suspect there was anything wrong with my Baby (God Forbid) I would be sent on for a more intense scan for diagnostic purposes if required. As for justifying the fees, that word hurts my head, we're on a wedding website here and many things are bought and paid for with no need for justifying the expense, but babies seem to be another matter. Perhaps Trish didn't mean anyharm by that expression but it makes me feel as if I'm splashing out on a Vera Wang Dress. By the way there is a third way to go:- Semi Private, if you go onto the differences in care between the three practices are outlined. Best of luck.
bibikay Posts: 644
Hi June 06, I too have opted for private care, but I chose it not for the private room (which sparklymum pointed out is not guaranteed) or for the "consultant who may or may not even attend the birth". I lost two previous pregnancies, so this time I made damn sure that I was in the private system, as having seen it from both sides I can tell you that despite what people say, yes there IS a difference in care. I received tests and monitoring (most scanned baby in Ireland!!) and medication to sustain this pregnancy that would not have been the norm if I had been public, and here I am now at 36 weeks, excitedly looking forward to the arrival of our first baby in a few weeks , so I don't begrudge a penny of the money we are spending. From talking to family and friends, (who have chosen mixture of private and public care) , the common consensus is that if your pregnancy is straightforward and there are no complications, then yes, you could see the approx €1,500 (after tax) payments as wasted money. But, God forbid that anything goes wrong , or if there are any complications during the birth, then the money spent on going private is well spent. This is very much a personal decision - you'll get so many different opinions on it, that it really is down to yourself and your partner to decide what is right for ye, and what you would define as "value for money" Good luck with the TTC whatever your decision. bibikay
Ailise1 Posts: 36
When I had my baby two years ago I went public, my son was 6 weeks premature and I was in hospital a week before and a week after he was born. The public care was fine but i have to say on my next baby I will definately go private, being on a public ward for two weeks i thought I would never get home and i know it would cost a fortune if the same thing was to happen again but hey i defo think it woukld be worth it.
WifeZilla Posts: 1222
I'll definately go private if i ever have a baby. I've heard from friends with babies that they found a difference between the public and private system. I can only go by the previous surgeries i've had and within a month of seeing the consultant, had my surgery date about 2 months later. I do agree in what Sparklymum is saying and that thousands of euro are being spent for just one day on a wedding and it's considered a rip off going private. This is a new life coming into teh world and the most important thing that will happen to anybody, so I'm guessing price doesn't come into it. I'd be much more confident going private.
Trish07 Posts: 506
Just incase I came across wrong if I had any doubts that there was something wrong or going to go wrong I would have no hesitation in going private. I think it depends where you are in the country too, most likely if I was in dublin Id go private. And Ill definitely be going private if there is any follow ups for the baby which is possible due to family history of eye problems. Im just wondering now though that if when the baby is born and there was god forbid something wrong could I automatically switch to private care for the baby, as far as I know I only need to notify vhi of his birth and then he is covered.
June06 Posts: 264
Hi Girls, Thank you all for your helpful replies, I think after reading this I should probably avail of my health insurance and go private for peace of mind if anything else. Thanks to everyone you have really helped me in making my decisions. June06
brideeee Posts: 1490
A friend of mine went private and the consultant said to her it was good idea to go private for your firt pregnancy, but after that you should be fine to go public, xx brideeee
nettie07 Posts: 293
Im going with the community midwifes schemme in my local hospital. i think this is propbably the best option, its only avavilable to low risk pregnanceys tho. there are just 4 midwifes in this scheme in my hospital, and one of thoose will deliver my baby when the time comes. I was going private untill i got this option, but i think this is a bit more personal, just another option for you to look into.