Average U.S. Facility Charges for Giving Birth

Facility Labor and Birth Charges by Site and Mode of Birth, United States, 2009-2011

Average facility childbirth charges vary depending on the place of birth (hospital or birth center), the way you give birth (vaginal or cesarean birth), and whether there are complications. As you can see below, the average hospital charge for an uncomplicated vaginal birth is about five times the average birth center charge for a vaginal birth. Hospital charges skyrocket when there are complications and when the birth is by cesarean section. This chart shows average charges nationally. You can also view state-by-state charges.

Facility labor and birth charges by site and mode of birth, United States, 2009-2011


Figures in graph do not include the following charges:

  • additional anesthesia services charge for all cesarean and most vaginal births in hospitals
  • additional newborn care charge for all births in hospitals
  • additional maternity provider charge for all births.

Payments of third-party payers typically reflect a discounting of charges.
Birth center figure is average charge reported by 61 out-of-hospital birth centers.
Average birth center charge not available for 2009 and 2011.

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U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, HCUPnet, Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project. Rockville, MD: AHRQ. Available at: http://hcupnet.ahrq.gov/

American Association of Birth Centers. Uniform Data Set. Perkiomenville, PA: AABC, 2010.