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So a Hospital Charged a Mom $39.35 to Hold Her Baby

A new dad recently posted a copy of a hospital bill he and his wife received to Reddit, following the delivery of their baby, and while the high total may raise eyebrows, it's one line item in particular that really riled up the internet: "Skin-to-Skin After C-Sec." That's right, a mom was charged just to hold the baby she gave birth to. And the price for such a "benefit?"


Yes, really.

A labor and delivery nurse weighs in on the topic in the comments and hypothesizes that the additional charge may be due to the need for a separate nurse to hold the baby up to Mom for some skin-on-skin time. However, the original poster (Dad) says that he was allowed to hold his newborn son on his wife's chest and neck, and there wasn't anyone else involved who wasn't already in the room.

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In fact, during the surgery, the couple was asked if they'd like to do skin-to-skin after the birth, and they readily agreed, so it's not like they had to hurriedly page for more staff to facilitate this. And a few weeks later, they got a laugh at the added charge on the hospital bill.

While the new parents appear to have a good sense of humor about it, I'm totally outraged. There was no additional staff member, equipment or anything that made this sweet event possible except the strong arms of dear ol' Dad, so why the hell did the hospital decide to tack on $40 to the bill? Because they can?

...it's completely ridiculous that something that moms who have a vaginal birth simply experience for "free" is an itemization on another family's C-section bill.

While the idea of a gentle C-section is relatively new, it's completely ridiculous that something that moms who have a vaginal birth simply experience for "free" is an itemization on another family's C-section bill.

I've personally experienced both types of births. My first was a C-section, and the other three were VBACs. While my C-section was many years ago, the staff still tried to make it as nice of an experience as they could for me. Aside from bringing the baby up to me to kiss, there was no skin-to-skin, and I really didn't experience the "plop the baby on your chest" thing until my fourth was born in 2009.

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But I can bet that had I been given the chance to hold my baby post-C-section, I would've taken it in a heartbeat. I can also bet that when I later found out I'd been billed for the skin-to-skin cuddling, I'd probably have either raged on the phone to somebody or cried at home in a puddle of breast milk.

Insurance is great, and hospitals are wonderful, but some of the things both entities do can really leave us scratching our heads. Luckily for the hospital, the new mom and dad laughed off the nontraditional charge and went about their lives, because at the end of the day they have all that really matters—a happy and healthy baby.

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