There is no denying that it costs a good bit of money to have a baby. There are all kinds of things that new parents need for their new babies such as cribs and strollers, car seats and sippy cups, diapers, and clothes, and so on and so on.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves. Before we can even get to all of that, there are the costs associated with actually having the baby — charges for prenatal care, hospital stays and delivery. It may surprise you to learn that families in the U.S. pay the highest delivery costs in the world, according to a survey by the International Federation of Health Plans.
In the U.S., the average cost for a conventional delivery is a whopping $9,775. Compare this to the $3,541 to have a baby in France or the $2,641 cost to have a baby in the United Kingdom.
But the costs for delivery are not the same in each state. A recent survey compared the best and worst states to have a baby by looking not only at budget considerations but also health care conditions and the baby-friendliness of the state. Researchers looked at everything from hospital charges to the number of pediatricians per capita to the infant mortality rate for each state.
Using these criteria, here are the top 10 best and worst states to have a baby:
Best states to have a baby
- New Hampshire
Worst states to have a baby
- South Carolina
- New York
- West Virginia
- North Carolina
Here are some other interesting findings from the report:
- California has the best parental leave policies, whereas 17 states tied for the worst.
- The number of pediatricians per capita in the District of Columbia is 92 times higher than in Pennsylvania.
- The infant mortality rate in Mississippi is three times higher than that in Alaska.