It is understandable that different moms have different experiences based on their, and their child’s health, but for the purpose of this article, we will be basing our assumptions on a healthy mother and child. If you think we left something important out, do feel free to leave a comment in the section below! Love this article? Share it on Facebook! Think we’ve written something awesome and want to get more awesome updates? Subscribe to our Email Newsletter! or like us on facebook!
Your first visit to a gynaecologist will set you back about S$250 and this includes consultation, ultrascan and vitamins. Going forth, a monthly visit is required and from the 12th week onwards, most gynaecologists will probably get you on a package. While most packages at private hospitals range from $850 onwards, it is always advisable to ask what is included.
Are vitamins, various blood tests and detailed scans part of the package? Otherwise, be prepared to top up during each visit. For these packages$900 is claimable from Medisave for mothers who have delivered on or after 24 March 2016.
Gynaecologists will also advise you on their delivery rates. This amount depends on the delivery method (natural or caesarean) as well as the hospital that you choose.
A 3D2N stay in a 2 Bedded room at Mount Alvernia, with natural delivery and epidural will cost about $2,421.41. These packages do not include the necessities, hospitals will charge for additional medical supplies, drugs and/or additional procedures. As a heads up for first time moms, hospitals bill you for extra sanitary pads, syringes, breast pump rentals and so on, and so forth. Nursery rooms cost $107 per day* and this is exclusive of the paediatrician daily visit rates. The approximation for baby’s total bill is $600. The maximum Medisave claimable is $1,650 and most moms pay about $5000 in cash after this deduction.
*Package prices are effective from 1 May 2016 and inclusive of 7% Goods and Services Tax (GST) as stated on Mount Alvernia’s website as of 7th May 2016.
Delivery charges for individual hospitals can be obtained from their respective websites.
Prepping for the arrival of your baby
Up to this stage, you should have already set aside an approximate $7,000 for your gynaecologist and the hospital. You and your spouse are excited about the arriving baby and is going on a shopping spree. Here is a guideline of the essentials and their costs.
A travel cot starts from about $200, while fancier ones with more functions can go up to $1,000. Do ask about how long your baby can sleep in the cot (I.e. Maximum age they can sleep in the cot). Travel cots usually take a baby that weighs up to 15kg – about 2 – 3 years old – while others go up to as old as 4 years old. There are cots that can be converted into toddler bed and even a table eventually!
Some babies refuse to sleep in a stroller and others on carriers, so it really is a game of luck here. Strollers can cost anywhere between $150 – $4,000 for single seaters. Carriers, range from $150 for a basic one, to $1500 for the limited edition ones. For strollers, it is best to keep to one that is portable and can be folded easily. As for carriers, there has been a lot of talk among mothers about which are ergonomic and which are not, those that are not may cause hip dysplasia.
If you intend to breastfeed, invest in a good breast pump. Some moms wait to see if latching is for them before going out to get a breast pump, while some keep one handy before delivery. Breast pumps cost from $200 to $800. And if you are not going to breastfeed, formula costs approximately $60 a can and will last you between a week to two.
In the ideal scenario, your baby takes whichever bottle that you purchased. In normal circumstances, many moms try a few brands before the baby settles on one. A milk bottle can cost from $5 to as much as $50, and usually 6 bottles are required.
UV or steam, both works. Be prepared to set yourself back from $100 to $500.
Baby detergent, bathing necessities:
Shower foam, towels, bath tub and moisturiser are a few of the items that you’ll need and in all, these will easily cost you $100 in total.
This makes up the bulk of expenses apart from milk formula. Three packs of diapers (about 70 in each) cost an average of $65. Infants require a change of diaper very frequently. It’s not uncommon for a newborn baby to go through anywhere between 10 – 15 diapers in a day.
Clothes, pillows, swaddles, toys, baby camera, pacifiers, handkerchiefs and wet wipes to name a few will add on to your expenses drastically.
On average, the items above would set you back a good $3,000. While some of those items are a onetime purchase, many are a recurring expenditure. And it doesn’t stop there, there are immunisation jabs, paediatric visits and much more to consider.
Tips to parents
Read. Research. Review. Before you make any purchase, read and research what suits you best. There are many cheaper alternatives to what is in the market. For example, if you are not too particular, strollers and carriers can be bought second hand off the resale market through platforms like Carousell and Gumtree. Brand new items can also be purchased off these avenues at a fraction of the retail stores because many parents are also trying to see what is best of their baby. You may even find out that some items are not required like musical cot mobile toys and changing stations.
Go to baby fairs and check out the promotions. Join Facebook groups and converse in forums and with friends. Attend talks and seminars to prep yourself as parents and to collect goodies bags so you can try out the samples before committing to a brand or product. Talk to other parents and you will find that some are moving away from traditional norms, more mums are starting to do away with confinement nannies (that cost an average of $3000) and helpers.
Just as you can opt for a public hospital to lower cost, a baby’s immunisation jabs can be done at polyclinics as well, as certain jabs are free. If you prefer going to a children’s clinic, always call to ask if consultation charges are to be included as this will jack up your total bill.
In this article, we based our discussion on a healthy mother and child, but unfortunately, things aren’t always that way and there are many factors that can result in medical problems for both. Purchasing Prenatal Insurance allows you to protect both mother and child and will provide a medical reimbursement of up to $5,000 – $10,000 for the first two trimesters of pregnancy and the child after birth.
More importantly, prenatal insurance (Normally a rider on life insurance) allows the life insurance policy – initially assigned to the mother – to be transferred to the child upon birth. Securing his future even before he/ she is born.
This is just the beginning of an added load of expenses in your life, but as the saying goes, “A baby fills a place in your heart that you never knew was empty”, so embrace this new phase of your life!
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