Childbirth Isn’t Cheap — Here’s How Much It Costs in Your State

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Mother holding her newborn baby child after labor in a hospital.
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When you think of new baby expenses, the costs of diapers, formula and cute little outfits probably come to mind.

Some may consider the cost of childcare, though many first-time parents underestimate that major expense.

But one budget item that is often left out of the entire conversation is the cost to actually have the baby. Going from fetus to newborn is an expensive — and painful! — event.

Money recently looked into the average cost to give birth in each state, both for vaginal and cesarean-section deliveries.

The costs range from $5,017 to $10,413 for a vaginal birth and from $7,439 to $14,528 for a C-section. This covers everything from the obstetrician’s fees (generally including prenatal care) to the price to occupy a hospital room and have an anesthesiologist administer pain-relieving drugs.

The costs to care for the newborn following birth were not factored in.

Expecting parents may only have to pay out a portion of those costs, depending on their insurance plans. That percentage can vary widely and can be affected by factors like whether parents choose an in-network doctor or have already met their deductible.

The estimated average costs Money used in its analysis are based on rates insurance providers negotiated.

“Those who have no insurance at all are usually charged a higher amount than the negotiated rate,” Money writes.

But even with insurance, don’t expect the cost of childbirth to be a walk in the park.

According to Money, women in the U.S. pay more to have a baby than women in any other country.

The lists below highlight the most and least expensive states to give birth.

Most Expensive States for Vaginal Births

  1. Alaska: $10,413
  1. New Jersey: $9,302
  1. New York: $8,936
  1. Wisconsin: $8,314
  1. Connecticut: $8,102
  1. Florida: $7,800
  1. Massachusetts: $7,767
  1. California: $7,626
  1. Illinois: $7,526
  1. Texas: $7,349

Least Expensive States for Vaginal Births

  1. Alabama: $5,017
  1. Utah: $5,357
  1. Rhode Island: $5,401
  1. Nebraska: $5,432
  1. Kansas: $5,541
  1. Louisiana: $5,590
  1. Arkansas: $5,600
  1. Mississippi: $5,605
  1. Idaho: $5,695
  1. Hawaii: $5,743

Most Expensive States for C-Section Births

  1. Alaska: $14,528
  1. New Jersey: $13,300
  1. New York: $11,887
  1. Wisconsin: $11,640
  1. Connecticut: $11,208
  1. Florida: $10,926
  1. Illinois: $10,737
  1. California: $10,675
  1. Texas: $10,576
  1. Massachusetts: $10,534

Least Expensive States for C-Section Births

  1. Washington D.C.: $7,439
  1. Alabama: $7,730
  1. Louisiana: $7,985
  1. Arkansas: $8,037
  1. Maine: $8,182
  1. Utah: $8,226
  1. Hawaii: $8,265
  1. Rhode Island: $8,337
  1. Idaho: $8,341
  1. Ohio: $8,371

See Money’s article to find out how all 50 states ranked.

Nicole Dow is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She enjoys writing about parenthood and money.

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