How to Afford Pregnancy and Birth Without Insurance

Approximately 26 million people in the United States are uninsured. The cost of prenatal care without health insurance runs around $2,000, and childbirth costs range from $9,000 – $15,000+. If you’re pregnant and uninsured, the good news is there are many options available that can cover or help cover your prenatal care and childbirth costs. Take a look at the list below and follow the links to learn more and find a solution for your needs. 

Health Care Plans 

Open enrollment for private or government (ACA) health care plans

If it’s available to you, you can join a private health care plan during the open enrollment period, which is usually offered 1-2x per year. The government health care plan, ACA, offers open enrollment from November 1 to January 15. 

ACA outside of open enrollment (in some states)

If you need coverage outside of the open enrollment period, some states allow you to sign up for ACA outside of that timeframe. 

Your parent’s health care plan

If you’re under the age of 26, you may still be able to get coverage under your parent or guardian’s health care plan, even if you don’t still live with your parents. Ask your parent to contact their provider to determine coverage, eligibility, and any relevant limitations.

Income-based Health Insurance, Care Programs & Resources

Medicaid

Medicaid is a government health care program specifically for people with low income. You can apply online or in person with your local Medicaid agency. 

Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) (available in some states for pregnancy)

While this government-sponsored program is typically reserved for children, it is also available to pregnant people in Colorado, Missouri, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Virginia, and West Virginia, and has higher income limits. 

Local/county health department

Go to your local or county health department for resources and possible prenatal care coverage. Care from the health department is generally reserved for those with low incomes, but even if you don’t qualify for coverage, they can help point you in the direction of other resources to get the care you need and can afford.  

Community health center

A community health center provides prenatal care at reduced fees based on income. Search here to see if there is a health center in your area. 

Planned Parenthood

Some Planned Parenthood locations provide prenatal care and are able to charge according to your income level. If your nearest location does not offer these services, they will be able to help you find the best local resources. Search their directory to find a location near you

Hill-Burton facility

Several hospitals and health clinics in the United States are able to provide free or low-cost care due to funds received from the Hill-Burton Act grants. Check the directory to see if there’s one near you and call to find out how to apply. 

Charity care organizations

Several nonprofit and faith-based organizations provide a range of prenatal and postpartum support services, including in some cases, prenatal care. Call your local health department to learn about the organizations in your area.  

Self-pay Option

Anyone, regardless of income, can be a self-pay patient. If you’re self pay, you have leverage to negotiate a self-pay rate, which is often less expensive than the rate you pay with an insurance plan. 

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