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Shanghai and Beijing Maternity Costs 2018

Families need to keep focused on the bottom line these days. While in China the middle class has been expanding for some time, there is still a trend in the developed world that has seen wages in some places stagnate. As well, worries about bubble economies and the potential for inflation are always floating around the zeitgeist. Inflation in the real world is a constant, and as demand rises with each successful year that passes by in China, so too do prices.

With this in mind, it can be harder than ever before for people to feel comfortable with starting or expanding their family by having a child. With this in mind, Pacific Prime China presents the following article that highlights by just how much maternity prices rose from 2016 to 2018 at some of the top hospitals in Shanghai and Beijing. Hopefully, with this information, parents-to-be can plan ahead and make sure that they are ready to address the maternity costs 2018 of pregnancy, labor, and delivery in China, and decide if the time is right for a new bundle of joy.

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Hospitals in Shanghai and Beijing

When in the largest metropolitan areas in China, parents-to-be generally have two options when it comes to having a baby. They can either opt for extremely affordable maternity care at a public hospital – which is covered by social insurance, but also sees a somewhat lower quality of care and accommodation. A woman could give birth and stay in a standard ward, shared by herself and five other women, for only RMB 36 a night. In this scenario, the delivery itself will likely cost around RMB 3,000 and be reimbursed by social insurance.

On the other hand, a new mother can receive the most excellent care a private hospital can provide, and stay in a top-notch room with all the bells and whistles she might want, but it’s going to cost her. Needless to say, the high quality care of the latter scenario is not going to be covered by social insurance.

Below, we have a look at a handful of popular maternity hospital options among expats living in both Shanghai and Beijing, both of which Pacific Prime China has offices in. For each one, we have included the costs of prenatal packages, and vaginal and Cesarean delivery costs that include prenatal packages. The prices mentioned are those for standard deliveries of the mentioned type, with a stay in a standard private room. Also, where possible we have included 2016 costs to see where some hospitals have increased costs over the past couple of years, and by how much.

Maternity costs 2018 at Shanghai hospitals

Hospital Package 2018  Cost (CNY) 2016 Cost (CNY)
Shanghai United Family Hospital Prenatal 26,000 18,888
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 80,000 58,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 119,000 98,000
American-Sino Shanghai Prenatal 20,000 20,000
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 45,000 45,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 70,000 70,000
Shanghai East International Medical Center Prenatal 18,000
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 49,880
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 68,880
*The International Peace Maternity & Child Health Hospital of China Welfare Institute (IPMCH) Prenatal (1 check up) 800 – 1,000
Private Room Delivery 1,200
VIP Room Delivery 4,500 – 6,000

*Public hospital (All others are private)

As you will see later on in this piece, the United Family Hospital locations in both Shanghai and Beijing have the highest costs of maternity care of any hospitals highlighted. In Shanghai, this included a nearly 30% increase to the prenatal package offered by the facility. This particular hospital is the most expensive of the hospitals we observed in Shanghai for maternity care. In fact, the maternity costs 2018 at the Shanghai branch of the hospital chain is more expensive than even the Beijing location.

By contrast, the American-Sino Hospital in Shanghai saw no price increases over the same time period. This is definitely remarkable, as most hospitals around the world – let alone China  – will have seen rising medical costs from 2016 to 2018.

Unsurprisingly, the one public hospital covered in the table above, IPMCH, has by far the lowest prices for delivery of either kind. However, patients should be wary of getting all of their prenatal check-ups at this facility, as there are no prenatal check-up packages available. This means that a person has to pay for each individual check up. While most people will not need so many checkups that the CNY 800 charge will end up costing more than a prenatal package at another hospital, but the potential is there nonetheless.

Maternity costs 2018 at Beijing hospitals

Hospital Package 2018  Cost (CNY) 2016 Cost (CNY)
Beijing United Family Hospital Prenatal 20,800 17,800
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 86,800 56,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 108,800 78,000
Beijing Oasis International Hospital Prenatal 17,800 17,800
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 42,800 42,800
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 68,800 68,800
Beijing Amcare (3 locations) Prenatal 18,977
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 49,740
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 69,650
Beijing HarmoniCare Prenatal 17,640
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 42,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 56,180
Beijing New Century Women and Children’s Hospital Prenatal 13,884
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 40,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 55,000
*Peking Union Hospital International Department Prenatal (1 check up) 800
Prenatal + Vaginal Delivery 40,000
Prenatal + Caesarean Delivery 80,000

*Public hospital (All others are private)

Again, Beijing United Family hospital is the most expensive hospital covered in Beijing, and the rise in costs that the facility has seen for both prenatal packages and delivery from 2016 to 2018 have been significant.

Meanwhile, a hospital like Beijing Oasis International Hospital or New Century Hospital (not included in table above) still has the same price today as it had in 2016. This discrepancy raises some interesting questions about the reasoning and motivations between annual price hikes for different types of medical care in China. Of course, to get the full picture it would take access to information that hospitals do freely offer to the public at large.

Another interesting aspect of maternity costs 2018 in Beijing that is shown above is that not all public hospitals are necessarily cheaper than their private counterparts. Looking at the delivery costs for Peking Union Hospital’s International Department sees prices very similar to those found in some private hospitals in Beijing.

What’s more, it’s important to remember that, depending on which type of room and level of service you choose to obtain in some public hospitals, China’s social insurance may not cover maternity costs whatsoever. This generally means that you are going to end up having to address the costs of labor and delivery yourself if you want the top level of care and accommodation that a China hospital has to offer. This means either paying out of pocket, or obtaining private maternity insurance with coverage in China.

Maternity insurance in China

So, do you need maternity insurance in China? Well, that depends on what you might see as the biggest takeaway from the above information. If you look at the table for your city above and think to yourself, “Easy. I’ll just keep it cheap and cheerful and have my baby at a public hospital,” then maternity insurance may not be right for you, as expected costs will be low.

However, if you think, “I don’t care what the costs are. My baby is going to have the best doctors and care possible,” then it might be time to start considering maternity insurance.

This is because planning ahead is so important when it comes to maternity insurance plans. Waiting periods of a year or more are common with maternity insurance plans, so you need to have one in place well in advance of becoming pregnant if you want your pregnancy, labor, and delivery to be covered.

If you think China maternity insurance is right for you, contact the helpful insurance advisors at Pacific Prime China today! They can find the best plans available on the market for your needs, and provide you with a free price quotation and plan comparison. Contact us today!

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