Choosing a Hospital: How Do They Differ?
You might call the Labor and Delivery service of the hospital and ask them a few questions. The tone and attitude of the answers will probably reveal more about the hospital than the actual answers. Ask them about any issues that are important to you. Examples might be support of breastfeeding, the availability of a lactation consultant, use of epidural anesthesia, use of labor/delivery/recovery suites, etc.
Finally, hospitals can vary in the charges for their services and how much of that charge will be paid by your insurance plan. If you are likely to pay a percentage of the charges before your insurance coverage begins, you should know what your costs will be. You must know what your insurance plan includes and should talk with the business office of the hospitals you are considering. Talk with your benefits manager, review your policy, and speak with someone in the hospital business office to make sure you have your facts straight.
Identifying differences in hospital quality is difficult for patients. There are several sources of information that you can use to know more about your hospital. Knowing someone who works in the medical area remains the best way to know which hospital provides the best service in your area.
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