I had to quit my job when we found out I was pregnant (I had been working as a waitress/bartender in a smokey bar). Applied for Medicaid and was accepted. Went to a local hospital.
When I decided I wanted a home birth, my fiance thought it would be a good idea to continue going to the hospital visits along with the home visits we were getting from our midwife. It was kind of his experiment to see the differences between the two, which turned out to be fascinating indeed.
We paid *out of pocket for our home birth, which consisted of paying our doula, midwife and getting some supplies. We ended up paying about $1600. *We put it on our credit card!
I thought of this hypothetical: "having a home birth is too expensive. My insurance doesn't cover it," "but we just put a plasma-screen TV on our credit card last weekend." Or you could insert, 'new car', or 'a boat', whatever! Know what I mean?
We spent our money damn well if you ask me. ;)
mine was free! sorry to rub it in.
for those who are considering a move to canada, do it! there are many provinces that cover midwifery care (home or hospital) under the government health care (yep, for free).
i live in BC, our health care is called MSP (medical service plan). it is supposed to be 'free for all' but there is a percentage charge depending on your income. no fee for low income. so we pay about $20 a month. or we used to, now my husbands work pays. this covers all dr visits, a portion of meds, all testing, surgeries, hospital stays, specialist referrals and the rest).
many people have extended health benefits through their employer to cover glasses, dentist, massage, naturopathic, chiropractic.
we had a homebirth and it was covered (prenatal, testing, birth, postpartum). i paid to rent a birthing tub and some home supplies (candles, fish scoop, towels etc) all medical supplies the midwife had.
i wish it was like this for all!
but even with this, most people have births at the hospital with a dr (usually gp's that catch babies). the awareness is slowly changing. there are not midwifes everywhere, but most places.