How much does it cost to have a baby in the Philippines?
One of the reasons why RH turned into law is because of the fact that the more mouths there are to feed, the harder life will become. One of the harsh realities that we have to face is that most Filipinos are not financially prepared to welcome a new addition in the family. Most pregnancies happen without any financial consideration. Having a baby can be a life-changing experience. Not only do you have to adjust how you live your life, but you also need to know how much you really need to have your own bundle of joy.
Delivery is not the only concern that you have to worry of. You need to also look at the different factors in raising a baby. For instance, how much do diapers cost these days? What about milk formula? Of course, on top of all those expenses, you still need to have a buffer for any emergency that might occur. What most don’t realize is that the expenses will start piling up way before the baby is even born. Here is a rough breakdown of how much you need financially to have a child.
Medication & Supplements
The first trimester of a pregnancy is the most crucial time. Mothers-to-be are highly encouraged to take various medications and supplements to minimize the risks involved in the pregnancy. Some of the supplements required are Folic acid tablets, and other multivitamins.
A nine-month supply of vitamins may vary in prices depending on the brand that you are getting. However, it is possible to get them at a cheaper price at the drug stores selling generic brands. This can easily cost about P2,000 over nine months, which is not that bad after all.
Mothers-to-be need to see an obstetrician-Gynecologist (Ob-gyn) regularly to monitor the health of the mother and the baby. A consultation with an ob-gyn would typically cost at least P500 depending on the hospital and the doctor.
Typically, a pregnancy check-up, the doctor will use the ultrasound machine, charging around P770 to P2500, depending on the extent of the scan.
The frequency of your consultation would depend on the condition of both the mother and the child. If there are health risks involved, then consultations will be more regular.
In a normal pregnancy, mothers are required to go for a check-up once a month in the first seven months, once every two weeks in the eighth month and once every week in the final month. This can easily come up to P35,000 by the end of the pregnancy.
Choosing to deliver your baby in a public hospital is your cheapest option. It can even be free or as low as P2, 000. For a semi-private facility with a common ward (sharing), you may have to shell out at least P24, 000.
Another factor that could raise the cost of your stay in the hospital is the kind of delivery that occurred. If you and your baby are at risk, then it is possible that you end up going for a C-section, which can be in the range of P44,000 to P50,000, including staying on a ward. For normal delivery, you can expect to pay around P24,000 to P27,000.
As for those who are staying in a private room, the price starts at P50, 000.
Hospitals such as Makati Medical Center, Medical City and St. Luke’s Medical Center can easily cost as much as P140, 000 for a semi private room. These hospitals are known for their top facilities, which explains the price.
To help with the expenses involved in a pregnancy, it would be a good idea to have benefits, and HMO coverage. This will cover the cost of pregnancy from the check-up to the delivery, and even during childcare period. SSS and PhilHealth can help reduce the hospital costs. In fact, if you have everything prepared, you can even have it for free.
• Health of your baby
Once your baby is born, you need to make sure that you have a pediatrician ready. It is important to have a pediatrician that you can trust. Also, you will need to ensure your baby gets all the vaccines required. Of course, vaccines are provided for in the health centers for free. However, if you are not willing to go through the long queue, you can opt for vaccination at a private pediatrician. This would cost around P5, 000 depending on who you talk to.
• Crib, diapers and other baby essentials
You will be surprised how much money you need to initially invest when you have a baby. You need to purchase a stroller, crib, baby high chair and other knickknacks that come with having a baby. For the next 12 months or so, you may have to spend as much as P20, 000 or higher depending on the brands, on clothings, and baby accessories alone. Diapers will cost P500 a pack that can last about two weeks.
Overall, you need to spend P240,000 in the first year!
• Nanny services
Being a parent, to a certain extent, means being able to multitask. Most parents strive to work full time to provide for their family and also pay bills every month. This is when a nanny could take the caretaker role while both parents are at work. An experienced nanny would usually ask for P4000/month, not including their benefits.
For the first couple of months, the cost of feeding the baby can be reduced if the mother breastfeeds the baby. As the baby grows older, though, some parents switch to formula milk and even move on to semi solid foods by their sixth month.
A large can of formula milk can cost around P1,200 which could last around seven days. For those who are looking to save some money, it is a good idea to talk to medical representatives who could provide Formula Milk for your baby.
Can you afford to have a baby?
Couples who are planning to have a baby should prepare themselves, emotionally and financially. Though having a bundle of joy is priceless, being a responsible parents mean making the necessary preparations to provide the best for your child.
The above are just some rough estimates when it comes to having your child. In this day and age, raising a child, in the best environment, can cost as much as P500, 000 a year. Of course, this is not feasible for the average income Pinoys. With this information, you will know just how much you have to prepare at least, before you proceed to having your own bundle of joy.