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OBGYN Fees


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#1 SmithBurns

Posted 01 September 2012 - 10:31 AM

OMG... Went for my 18weeks app a month ago and my OBGYN gave me a bill for almost $4000, to be paid by 24weeks. I never paid such a huge bill just for the privilege of having my last Dr on call. Apparently legislation changed last year and now they can demand these fee. Let's just say, DH and I decided that the money could be put to better use and changed to going private in a public hospital...
Just wondering if anyone else experienced this?

#2 Happy_daisy

Posted 01 September 2012 - 12:07 PM

That's the standard "pregnancy management" fee that all Obs charge, your Ob shouldve told you at your first appointment or when you were booking it what the amount was and that it was due around 20 weeks. Mine is around $2000, which from what I've heard is relatively cheap, but I'm in a different state. I've heard in Sydney it can get up to $10k.
From what I understand, the 'legislation change' is that as of a few years ago Medicare caps the amount you can get back from them for this fee. It hasn't changed the amount they can charge, it just changes your out of pocket expenses.
I can imagine it was a bit of a shock if you weren't told about it and just handed a bill!

#3 Lokum

Posted 01 September 2012 - 12:19 PM

Mine is $3500, of which we get back around $485 (same as everyone who's reached the safety net.)

We were prepared. Although it's not pleasant, we weighed it up and decided to 'afford' it.

I've had someone on call and exchanging heaps of emails with me while overseas, have been able to pop in for a checkup when worried, pop in for a Vit B12 shot when my levels indicated a severe deficiency. I talk to the same midwife every time when I'm just ringing up with a question.

When I had severe MS, my OB faxed a script to the chemist at the end of my street so I didn't have to haul myself to see her or a GP. She (or one of her group) are available 24/7 by phone. Last time, she picked up something in a routine prenatal appointment and did the induction/c/s that day.... and it turned out to be the exactly right clinical decision. Her c/s scar is beautiful work.

All these things encouraged me that it was 'worth' the money to have her be my Dr again.... which is not to safy you can't get great care in another, cheaper way.

But for plenty of people, a BMW is worth the extra money, even though you can get a great Camry for much cheaper, you know?

#4 Luci

Posted 01 September 2012 - 12:36 PM

I don't think it is necessarily accurate to say "now they can demand those fees".  It is not the fees that have changed at all, it is the Medicare rebate that has changed. My Ob's fees have not increased since I had my first child 7 years ago, but back then I got a lot more back from Medicare.

OP it was wrong of your OB not to make you aware of the fees from the outset because it is certainly a lot of money.

Luci



#5 spitzmum

Posted 02 September 2012 - 09:09 AM

I did my reading on EB and discovered the pregnancy management fee in my reading, so I was prepared to ask, but got a sheet that outlined all of the fees up front at my first appointment.

$2800 in Sydney - but mine is one of the cheaper ones.

You can claim any out of pocket medical expenses (such as the difference between the fee and medicare rebates) for a 20% rebate on your tax.

#6 StudyMum

Posted 02 September 2012 - 09:23 AM

I'm a bit surprised that you weren't told earlier about the cost of the PMF - fees with my obs were outlined to me by the receptionist as I booked my first appointment!

And as others have stated, it's not a case of them being able to charge whatever they want - it's the medicare rebate for the PMF that has changed. Ours was approx $3k of which we got approx $480 back. In saying that, it pushed us up over the threshold and after that we were only out of pocket $22 for each of my appointments. It also meant that we got more back for other services that medicare covered.

#7 TaGB

Posted 02 September 2012 - 11:23 AM

Holy dooley, no wonder you were shocked.... I thought they were obligated to disclose their management fee at your first appointment? Even so, that would be one of the first questions I would have asked.

Mine in Sydney is $2800 + $260 for the first consult, and he is on the cheaper end but he is great. When we had our DD in 2010, his fees were $2300, so haven't gone up that much over the last few years. The big difference is what we will be getting back from Medicare. Last time, we got around $1800 back, this time I am not counting on any.

This post reminds me that I will be forking this out in the next few weeks as it is due by 20 weeks....

#8 cordyline

Posted 03 September 2012 - 01:24 PM

Ours charges $1500 management fee plus $40 for each consultation. I'm in Brisbane though so it must be cheaper than Sydney. He's available via email and also has another OB that he partners with on weekends, if one of them is unavailable.

This OB also saw me for my two miscarriages and I never got charged a cent.

Starting to feel like I got a good deal.

#9 Beau-lea

Posted 04 September 2012 - 08:08 AM

Wow that surprises me they didn't tell you!!!

Brisbane prices were varied to say the least ... Started at 4k in Brisbane itself, at Sunnybank it started at $1600 then Ipswich was $700-750!
huge difference and with all 3 hospitals in our range we went with Ipswich .

#10 *ShirleyTemple*

Posted 04 September 2012 - 08:17 AM

We are in Darwin and there are only 3 private Obs. Mine charges $3k to be paid in two lump sums ($2k after 20wks and $1k at 28wks). I paid a fee for my first appt and the rest will be billed at the end to medicare. I was told all of this when I booked my initial appointment and was given an info sheet when I went in detailing everything. I was pleasantly surprised, as I expected to pay this much in Perth before we moved, and due to the limited choices up here, expected it to be at a premium.

Your Ob really dropped the ball if they didn't tell you upfront the costs!

#11 Catbiscuit

Posted 04 September 2012 - 10:12 AM

Just in reference to your post's last line, I am not sure what you meant by utting the money to better use by going private in a public hospital? Your private OB will still charge you the same fee for his/her services, it has nothing to do with the hospital you attend.

There is one OB in my area who was so popular that he put up his fees hoping to reduce is workload only to find that everyone assumed he must be REALLY good to charge so much and suddenly he had waiting lists for new patients. Apparently his wait times for standard checkups are horrendous.

I chose another OB with just as good references and experience who was $2k by 30 weeks and $55 per appointment ($5 gap when safety net reached). Turns out he has an agreement with the popular doctor to be his backup anyway!

#12 Guest_katem666_*

Posted 04 September 2012 - 12:06 PM

QUOTE (Catbiscuit @ 04/09/2012, 10:12 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Just in reference to your post's last line, I am not sure what you meant by utting the money to better use by going private in a public hospital? Your private OB will still charge you the same fee for his/her services, it has nothing to do with the hospital you attend.


Yeah, that confused me too.

#13 Ali-Nan Plum Jam

Posted 06 September 2012 - 12:16 AM

QUOTE (Lokum @ 01/09/2012, 12:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Mine is $3500, of which we get back around $485 (same as everyone who's reached the safety net.)

We were prepared. Although it's not pleasant, we weighed it up and decided to 'afford' it.

I've had someone on call and exchanging heaps of emails with me while overseas, have been able to pop in for a checkup when worried, pop in for a Vit B12 shot when my levels indicated a severe deficiency. I talk to the same midwife every time when I'm just ringing up with a question.

When I had severe MS, my OB faxed a script to the chemist at the end of my street so I didn't have to haul myself to see her or a GP. She (or one of her group) are available 24/7 by phone. Last time, she picked up something in a routine prenatal appointment and did the induction/c/s that day.... and it turned out to be the exactly right clinical decision. Her c/s scar is beautiful work.

All these things encouraged me that it was 'worth' the money to have her be my Dr again.... which is not to say you can't get great care in another, cheaper way.

But for plenty of people, a BMW is worth the extra money, even though you can get a great Camry for much cheaper, you know?


My bold. Simple fact is that if you have a low risk pregnancy then you don't need an OB. Sure, some people want one for peace of mind, but you don't need one.

I had an OB first time around and it actually just COMPLICATED my pregnancy. She created issues where there were none and I didn't feel cared for. I'm in a public hospital - have only had two appointments so far, but called over the weekend when I had a a minor issue and they helped me out.

If I had a high risk pregnancy then of course I'd like the extra monitoring, but since I don't need it no way am I forking out the extra.

And the BMW comment is pretty snobby. I'm happy with my commodore!

#14 Lokum

Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:09 AM

QUOTE (Ali-Nan Plum Jam @ 06/09/2012, 12:16 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And the BMW comment is pretty snobby. I'm happy with my commodore!


LOL, and I drive a 7 year old Camry!

Not snobby, just pointing out that different people find value in different things.

#15 Bowesam

Posted 07 September 2012 - 10:31 AM

Wow my OBGYN is charging $6.5K and it really does seem like a lot of money.  However, this is my first pregnancy and i really didnt know what to expect and he has been really great to us (which im sure the public option would be as well) but for me paying the fees for that extra peace of mind is worth every cent - I know that i have the best person available to me and my boy should there be any complications (which fingers crossed there wont be!)  Maybe once i have gone through this whole life changing experience i will be more comfortable in going public next time.

#16 bluebird84

Posted 07 September 2012 - 12:24 PM

I can't believe how much some of these people are charging! crazy. I feel very lucky to be in the catchment for an excellent hospital (RPAH) and going public, as I have been completely satisfied with my care so far. If I was in a different area with limited options I would definitely consider going private if the only public choice was no good.

#17 spitzmum

Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:55 PM

QUOTE (bluebird84 @ 07/09/2012, 12:24 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If I was in a different area with limited options I would definitely consider going private if the only public choice was no good.

This is my situation - a really nice & new , but unfortunately overworked hospital in my local area (Blacktown Publich) so we made the choice to go private.  I think this hospital has one of the highest rate of teen births in Sydney - they all go public!

#18 Babushka Doll

Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:05 PM

My OB (in Sydney) charges $4600 at 20 weeks, we have seen him for both babies and are seeing him for the third time.    We had some big problems come up with our house and we were forced to tell him that we couldn't continue seeing him this time and would be transferring to the public hospital - he wouldn't hear of it and said that this baby was on him!     So no charge.  

We could not believe it, but we are so overjoyed as the thought of going public was extremely scary for me after having him and his lovely midwife the past two pregnancies.

If you can afford it, in my opinion it is worth the money.

#19 sharkie81

Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:04 PM

My OB charges $1400 for the preg management fee (was $1200 with last baby) which is apparently the Medicare suggested rate- he doesn't like to charge more than this.

All fees were disclosed at first appt and I even had to sign a Informed Financial Consent form to declare that I was aware of the charges I would encounter.

He was amazing for my first birth and so I didn't even think twice about engaging his services again.

He also charges no gap for any type of delivery for my health fund.

ETA: I'm in Brisbane

Edited by sharkie81, 07 September 2012 - 09:04 PM.


#20 Maybe317

Posted 13 September 2012 - 12:36 AM

I pay $135 for each consultation (every four weeks) and then a $2500 management fee at 20 weeks. Any emergency consult is $75.

I get back about half of the $135 each time. Havent bothered to find out how much I get back of the $2500. But the hospital is free and if she is called to do an emergency procedure like a c section or something then I will be even more out of pocket. But considering I was told I would never have a baby, I would rather be safe safe safe and pay. We decided that when we found out. If we do have another one (my ob already discussed this with me and said it was very likely if I fell pregnant this time around) then we will go public. so much easier and less expensive, but I like having her available original.gif

#21 bub79

Posted 13 September 2012 - 08:39 AM

My first OB was $2,500 but I got a majority back because it was before medicare capped the rebate. Once the rebate changed I considered public hospital but was still keen on private. I was recommended another OB (as I wasn't happy with 1st one) who's fees were also very reasonable.

I paid $1500 for mgmt fee and rebate was only about $400. As this is my 2nd via same OB the fee drops to $750. Yay! original.gif


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