The Birth Budgeting Series was inspired by both The Doula Nurse and Functun’s audience: people focused on their goals and budget. One goal many people share is to become a parent. Even though we may be told we will never be prepared for children, we can be knowledgeable of the finances involved with having children. This series explores key areas during the prenatal, birth, and postpartum phases that one would want to be aware of and decide if it needs to be included in their personal budget. It will be presented in four parts: introduction, prenatal, birth, and postpartum. This is part one, the introduction.
Kat Louis is a Birth and Postpartum Doula who is in the process of becoming a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator. She has a background in public health and nursing and answered her calling to birthwork as she learned about the unjust practices within the US obstetrical healthcare system. She provides physical, emotional, and practical support; education; and advocacy to birthing people in the Atlanta area so they can reclaim their power and autonomy throughout their birth and postpartum experiences.
Molly Murphy has worked as a mechanical engineer for the last eight years. The first three were on the research and development side for desired metallic properties, while the latter five have been regional support on fastening (nuts and bolts) for top manufacturing companies. She created Functun as a way to apply her technical mindset towards helping other women and small businesses achieve their goals. She focuses on analyzing budgeting and time management relative to each client’s need and/or industry but specializes in product development and financial planning.
We will start off with the most important note throughout this series: the birthing person’s care and parental education are top priority. Everything found within this series is to inform on the process and the potential finances involved with the prenatal, birth, and postpartum phases. This is not to find the most cost-effective way to have a child, but to understand the potential resources provided to each of us based on some of the most common birthing practices. If your situation is not listed within these articles, we encourage you to do additional research or reach out to alternative resources that may be within your desired industry.
We believe the budgeting process starts with the individuals involved having open communication on the anticipated needs during the birthing process. This will be different for all but putting a plan together indicating the financial income and time available for resources will help keep everyone on track and aware of the families’ goals throughout the birth cycle. We will explore priority and supplemental needs within each phase.
The second step would be to discuss insurance. This deserves its own series, but to keep things informative, we recommend fully understanding your current insurance plan. Is it through your employer, network of choice, Medicaid, under parent/guardian or partner, or uninsured? Please reach out to your provider or provider of choice to get financial and network specifics on the current or desired policy to determine if it satisfies your preliminary birth plan. Insurance is important because birth plan specifics will have different financial outcomes depending on the plan chosen. Such as, do you want to give birth at a specific hospital? If so, are they in network? Will you want an epidural? If so, that will have an additional cost. Being aware of the preliminary birthing plan will help determine the proper insurance to align with it. This should be fully understood to put everyone’s mind at ease, knowing when and how much a medical bill will be.
Stay tuned for the upcoming articles that will explore key financial areas within the birthing process, starting with prenatal. As always, feel free to reach out to Kat for doula support and resources (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Molly for specific finance and budgeting support (email@example.com).
XOXO – Mrs. Molly Murphy