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Cost of entire pregnancy, private vs public

  1. #1
    staceycolyer is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Wan Chai

    Cost of entire pregnancy, private vs public

    I have just arrived in HK and am on a dependent visa. I will be getting a HK identity card quite soon. I am a UK citizen. I am hoping to fall pregnant within a year and have LOTS of questions!

    1) Can anyone recommend a good insurer who will cover all pregnancy needs (initial doctor visits as well as hospital stay, birth etc), as well as cover the child after it is born.

    2) I live in the Wan Chai area, can anyone recommend a good doctor in this, or near this area? And what would the best private and public hospitals in or near this area?

    3) What are the entire costs of private pregnancy? (including all the pre-birth needs as mentioned above, and hospital stay, birth etc)

    4) What are the entire costs of public hospital pregnancy?

    5) Lastly, what is the difference in quality between private and public?

    Your advice and recommendations will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    nicolejoy's Avatar
    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    North Point
    You've got a lot of questions - and you can find a lot of the answers by using the "search" feature on the webpage.

    PUBLIC hospital is ridiculously cheap. It costs about $360 for the hospital stay. PRIVATE is ridiculously expensive. It can cost (just for the hospital/delivery charges) in excess of $100,000.

    My insurance (AXA through my husband's employment) only covers up to $30,000 and so what I decided to do was to see a private doctor early on in the pregnancy and to plan for the delivery to be at the public hospital. Many people go this kind of "half half" route.

    Wan Chai - I believe that Sally Fergurson is there (for the doctor). Not sure of any others. But this site has a "doctors list" under "directory" at the top of the page.

    For hospitals, if you go private, you could do any of them really. For public, probably Queen Mary is best.

    Queen Mary has some of the best NICU care in Asia, even in the world. If you're booked in a private hospital but end up having the baby premature (before 34 weeks), you MUST give birth at Queen Mary, I believe (on Hong Kong island, anyway).

    About the doctors visits - if you SOLELY go public, the doctors visits are mostly free. SOME of the things, you have to pay for but it's VERY minimal. The ultrasound costs $60 in the public system, but they only do one or two.

    If you go to a private doctor, each visit will be around $1200 for the consultation and ultrasound, or maybe around $700 for just the consultation without an ultrasound.

    For me, it seems to be working well going to a private doctor every so often - but doing the majority of it through the public system. It has it's down sides - but it works for me. If you want to be more "pampered" throughout the pregnancy, if you want the "little extras" in terms of manners and seeing the same doctor all the time, the private system is much better. And the hospitals are more like hotels!! But the cost is incredibly high!!

    About insurance - I have no idea. We just use the insurance that came with my husband's job!!

  3. #3
    staceycolyer is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Wan Chai
    Thanks so much for all the info. Have been searching this site, but wanted to get answers to all the questions from one person - have found it difficult to piece together various responses from various people. Will keep researching. Thanks again!

  4. #4
    megan2008 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    sheung shui
    Just make sure that whether you decide public or private that you book the hospital immediately after you have a confirmed pregnancy. I originally wanted to go public but was turned down because they were full around my due date. At that point saving money wasn't an option and I could only get a booking at a private hospital. Just an FYI to save you some stress

  5. #5
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Sai Kung
    if you go public, you cannot "book" the hospital, besides being a gov't hospital, they will NOT turn you away. at least not in my two pregnancies that i've delivered in hk.

    which public hospital did you go to?
    Last edited by carang; 07-31-2008 at 06:45 AM.

  6. #6
    Smiles is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Happy Valley
    I would say (from what I've read and heard) the doctors in both public and private are very good. A lot of them seem to have trained abroad in the UK/USA. The main difference for the actual hospital stay is that at public hospital you seem to be very limited in terms of when your husband can visit and when he can actually attend during the labour (there are some threads on this) I think you also have to take a lot of the basic items with you e.g toilet paper, mattress protector etc. Also I think you're more likely to be on a ward as apposed to your own room. In private hospitals depending on how much you can pay (or insurance covers) you can get your own room and hubby can even stay with you.

    Like Nicole we're with AXA which is provided by my husbands work but as we knew we were going to get pregnant we got one of the top cover. This covers us for the dr visits and scans and the cost during hospital. Monthly it is a bit expensive but if you think that the entire pregnancy can cost anywhere up to HK$150,000 it is worth it (plus you have dental cover etc).

    Also you do need to book a hospital through your dr as soon as you even think you are pregnant....they get booked up very quickly. I use Dr Ferguson (orginally from the UK) and she delivers at the Matilda hospital. She's very down to earth and reassuring.

    Good luck on the road to pregnancy!

  7. #7
    stickybeak is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2007
    We use AIA - came with husbands job, and it covers up to $70,000 for v birth and $105,000 for c section.
    I think there was an option to top up the cover as well.

    I had a shared care arrangement with my local GP and ob - this made it cheaper. This was through Central Health - not sure if your local GP will offer this?
    It did mean that the care was more like that in the UK where you see mostly midwives and a GP - different to most women in HK where maternity care is all obstetrician appts.

  8. #8
    shri's Avatar
    shri is offline Administrator
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Hong Kong
    For insurance, best to speak to an agent. You can contact Pacific Prime, their ad is on the right hand side.

    We were previously covered with William Russell, but their premiums for Asia have gone up significantly. Now we're with Healthcare Intl

    They cover US$25K for maternity.

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