The private system offers more choices throughout the pregnancy and birth – you have a say in where you have the baby, who you will consult with and who’ll be at the birth. Private health insurance covers some of the costs, depending on your level of cover.
Here's some of your top questions answered.
Where will I have the baby?
Generally you will have bubs in a private hospital in a labour ward or birthing centre within the hospital. A caesarean birth will be in an operating theatre. If there is an emergency, you may end up being transferred to a public hospital.
How long will I stay in the hospital?
Most stays are 3 to 5 nights, and about 7 nights for a caesarean. This can mean more time to recover from the birth and to get support with breastfeeding.
Who’ll look after me throughout the pregnancy and birth?
You can consult with an obstetrician that you choose, in a private clinic. They’ll come to the birth if they’re available, along with the midwives from the private hospital. If your obstetrician can’t come on the big day (or night), they’ll arrange for another one to be there.
Will I get my own room after the birth?
It’s not guaranteed, but you’re much more likely to get your own room in a private hospital than in a public hospital.
How much can I expect to pay?
The costs of ‘going private’ varies widely and depends on your level of private health insurance and the types of medical services you receive throughout the pregnancy. To get an estimate, it’s best to check with your doctor, hospital, and health insurer. It’s also a good idea to look around and see what’s going to suit you, your budget and your expectations.
What other benefits can I get?
There are plenty of benefits you can claim if you take out private health insurance with extras. Depending on the level of cover you choose, you’ll be able to claim the standard extras like dental, physio and chiro — as well as a bundle of extra extras. Things like diet and nutrition to help you prepare, massage and acupuncture to alleviate those inevitable aches and pains, and lactation consultations to help you and bubs get off to a good start.