I am trying to get pregnant currently and I have been looking into my options for birthing centers or home birth and calling my insurance company to figure out if it is an affordable option. I am so discouraged at this point because my current insurance United Healthcare HMO does not cover birthing centers or home births at all. The insurance is through my work and I can only cancel or switch insurances when there is a "qualifying life event". I just changed from part-time to full-time so I guess that qualified but I have 30 days to do any switching. My work also offers CIGNA PPO plans but I called them up and they said they would cover 80% of the birthing center costs but nothing of the midwife costs (I guess they bill separately) and that is only if I can request and get approved for a "gap exception" because all of the nearby birthing centers are "out of Network" for ALL insurances. I am so frustrated with this whole thing that I don't know if it is going to be possible to afford this. I called the nearby hospital and they would not honor my decision to not have an IV or hep lock and to eat during labor as well as several other points in my birth plan. I also want a water birth if possible and they don't have that option. So I'm trying to figure out if a certain insurance will cover one of the nearby birthing centers or a midwife for home birth because I have 30 days if I want to switch and I don't know what insurance to switch to or if there is another option for me. Please help! I really want to give birth outside of a hospital.