Cost of Giving Birth at a Private Hospital in Nicaragua

21 Jun

I’ve received enough inquiries about the cost of giving birth at a private hospital in Nicaragua that I thought it was time to share the knowledge.

Lucinda was born at Hospital Metropolitano Vivian Pellas, in Managua.  To the best of my knowledge, it is the highest quality hospital in the country.  In addition to a wonderful OB department, the hospital also has a fantastic pediatrics department.

All told, we spent $2,200 for an all natural labor and delivery and approximately $1,000 on prenatal care.  I had a very healthy and relatively “easy” pregnancy, without complications.  I am 99% certain that I am missing some receipts from a few check-ups, ultrasounds, etc, so it’s probably safe to round the prenatal care up to $1,200.  This amount also includes some thyroid testing that not everyone will need.  In addition, at Lucy’s first check-up, we also ordered the genetic screening test (the heel prick) which tests for up to 60 possible genetic disorders.  I think that ran us about $250.

As we approached my due date, we were given the option to pre-purchase a Labor and Delivery Plan, which you can pay with a credit card.  Pellas offered 3 options.  Prices are from August 2010 and have likely gone up:

Plan de Parto ($610 for a private room; $500 for a semi-private room)

-1 day in a standard room

-The right to an epidural (note that this does not include the actual anesthesiologist)

-Use of the labor and delivery room

-Neonatal Day (nursing services and a pediatric “crib”)

-Determination of blood type and the Rh of the baby

-Basic medication for the mother and the baby for one day following childbirth

-Hearing test for the baby

Plan de Cesarea A ($725 for a private room; $670 for a semi private room)

-1 day in a standard room

-The right to an epidural (note that this does not include the actual anesthesiologist)

-Use of an operating room

-Use of a recuperation room

-Neonatal Day (nursing services and a pediatric “crib”)

-Determination of blood type and the Rh of the baby

-Basic medication for the mother and the baby for two days following childbirth

-Hearing test for the baby

Plan de Cesarea B ($950 for a private room; $800 for a semi private room)

-2 days in a standard room

-The right to an epidural (note that this does not include the actual anesthesiologist)

-Use of an operating room

-Use of a recuperation room

-2 days of Neonatal care(nursing services and a pediatric “crib”)

-Determination of blood type and the Rh of the baby

-Basic medication for the mother and the baby for two days following childbirth

-Hearing test for the baby

Not wanting to borrow trouble and having a natural birth plan in mind, we opted for the Plan de Parto and were reassured by the admin that if I did end up with a cesarean, they would only charge us the difference between the two packages.

It is important to note that this payment does not cover the cost of your doctors during your labor and delivery.  That price is negotiated between you and your doctor prior to your delivery.  At Pellas, in addition to your OB, a pediatrician is present during your delivery.  We paid $1,550 to our OB who then distributed proper amounts between himself, another OB, and the pediatrician.  I think we paid toward the high end because we actually had two OB’s present – one was my primary care OB and the other was the OB who performed all of the ultrasounds throughout my pregnancy.  Doctors usually do not accept credit card payments, so be prepared to pay in cash.  I do not recommend keeping $1,500, in cash, in your hospital room.  Instead, consider talking to your doctor, in advance, about paying him at your first postnatal visit, which will be a few days after your delivery.  We actually ended up paying in two installments, because it’s not easy to have that much cash around.

Below is a spreadsheet that outlines each individual medical expense, beginning with prenatal testing.

6 Responses to “Cost of Giving Birth at a Private Hospital in Nicaragua”

  1. CuriousExpat June 21, 2012 at 2:26 pm #

    Thanks again! This is fabulous information.

    • Sarah June 21, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

      You are very welcome! Some other things to consider are prenatal vitamins and folic acid which were not very expensive. Also, if you are not planning to live in Managua, you might also want to consider the cost of transportation to and from Managua for appointments, as well as the cost of a hotel or rental house in the days leading up to your due date.

  2. kirvenlove June 13, 2013 at 11:35 pm #

    thanks for the info. very helpful. my husband and I are having are 3rd child and are looking at having her here in NIcaragua. (we live in Granada) Were you able to go to the hospital beforehand to talk to doctors/visit. Any happen to speak English? lol Also, was the immigration pretty easy for your baby. (dual citizenship?) THanks for the help again!

    • Sarah September 24, 2013 at 3:16 am #

      Hi Brittany,
      I just wrote you a long reply and then erased the entire thing! In any case, my apologies for the delay in getting back to you and congrats on your pregnancy! Did you decide to have the baby here? We had a wonderful experience with our docs at Vivian Pellas in Managua. One of my doctors spoke fluent English. I’d be happy to give you more info offline. The citizenship application process was also fairly painless. I’ll try to write a detailed post about that soon, but feel free to email me via the contact button for more details.

      Saludos!
      Sarah

      • Eugenio September 25, 2013 at 5:44 pm #

        Hi! Thanks for the info! 2 questions: Can you give us the name of the Doctor who spoke English? Also, my wife is concerned about whether or not they monitor the baby during labor (heart) like they do in the states? We are due in Feb. Thank you!

      • Sarah September 26, 2013 at 8:58 pm #

        Hi Eugenio!
        I would be happy to help – I am now offering consultation via Skype – you can learn more http://expatlifeinnicaragua.com/relocation-consultations/. Let me know if you are interested by sending me a message.
        All the best!
        Sarah

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