J and I had our first appointment at the new practice yesterday. Overall it went really well. When we first got there we met with a woman in the billing department. She went over what the practice charges for maternity care. At first it kinda miffed me that they wanted to talk about money before we’d even been seen, but the more I think about it the more it makes sense. They had signs and flyers all over their office for people on medicaid or for those with no insurance. I think this is just their way of making sure that they get paid of services rendered, or so that they know people’s financial situations up front. My old practice never mentioned money to me at all, and now it makes me wonder what kinds of charges we might have been hit with had we stayed. The amount of money that we’re spending still makes my palms sweaty to think about, but I think it needs to be recorded so that other preggos, or women who are thinking about having a baby can have a realistic cost breakdown (after my baby is born I’ll be sure to write a post about what we actually paid to just HAVE the baby).
For our practice, their “normal” maternity care costs $3,562. They apparently have a deal with my insurance carrier, so that automatically brought the cost down to $2,554.79. Our deductible is $1,750, so if we subtract that from the $2554.79 we get – $804.79. Our insurance will cover 70% of the $804.79, which leaves us with a balance of $241.44. All in all, we paid our practice (including the deductible) $1,991.44. I get nauseous just looking at that number. After we forked over our credit card to make that payment, we were brought back to the waiting room to wait to meet our midwife.
When they called my name for the second time, we followed a very nice nurse who got my weight (I cringe every time I step on the scale), height, blood pressure and then sent me to the bathroom to pee in a cup. After that we were taken to another waiting room to wait for our midwife. We didn’t have to wait long, she came out, shook our hands and then brought us to her office. She got our medical history, chatted with us about a water birth. She actually smiled when we mentioned that we had a doula, and told us that we’d be in very good hands with her. She told me that my BP was a little high, and that they’re going to monitor it. She also told me that I really need to exercise. I hate to exercise, and will skip it in a heart beat if I can. I don’t actually mind it when I get going, but I never seem to want to get started. It’s not so bad for me when the sun is up when I get home, cause then I’ll take the dog on a long walk, but I’m afraid to do that when it’s dark outside. I’m going to have to fix that. I have an exercise plan that I’m starting today when I get home from work.
After that, she took us to an exam room and used the doppler to find the heart beat. It always seems like it takes forever for them to find it. Our Midwife told us that she’s curious to see where our placenta is because it sounds like it’s anterior, which means that it’s lying closest to my tummy. From my reading, I’ve found that an anterior placenta is neither good nor bad, it just is. It will mean that I’m less likely to feel the baby move in early pregnancy – which kinda sucks, but I’ll feel it eventually. After all of that we were sent to the lab to have blood drawn. I had to fill out some paper work that will let my new practice get my records from the old one, and they even broke up with the old practice for me so that I don’t have to make that uncomfortable phone call.
Overall, J and I were really pleased with the switch. We had a longer chat in one visit with the midwife than we did with 3 visits with the OB. She was very up front and direct, didn’t beat around the bush and actually listened to what I had to say. At some point we’ll meet the other midwife in the practice, and they rotate weeks at the hospital, so either one could deliver us. The cool news is that towards the end of the pregnancy we’ll get their cell phone numbers so we’ll be able to text or call them with any questions, or to let them know that we’ve gone into labor. I think that’s worth it’s weight in gold. I’m really liking this new practice, and J and I have an appointment next week to have our 18 week ultrasound!!! We’re so excited!!!