Saturday, July 7, 2012

It's a [package] deal!

Back when I was a medical intern, I had this notion at the back of my head that OB package deals were for people who couldn't afford private care. I don't think I was being a snob; the main draw of package deals really is their affordable price. For example, at the hospital where I plan to give birth, package deals for normal delivery--inclusive of prenatal care, accommodation, delivery room charges and professional fees--cost P5,000.

But package deals also have one advantage that I didn't realize until lately.

Anonymity.

When I go for prenatal consultations, I cherish the fact that I'm just one of many pregnant ladies in the waiting area. No one knows I'm a doctor--I told the nurse during enrollment that I was a copywriter, which is totally true. And I'm pretty sure the whole ordeal of labor and delivery will be a little less embarrassing if none of the attending staff know me.

Package deals definitely have their drawbacks and I don't recommend them for everyone. I never had an OGTT--as far as I can tell, the OB junior consultants only order it when your belly is bigger than expected, even though that shouldn't be the case. And we don't get as much education and counseling as is ideal--our PNCs rarely go beyond 10 minutes. Most importantly, if anything does go wrong during labor/delivery, I won't have the comfort of knowing that I'm in the hands of an experienced OB/Gyn.

That said, package deals aren't too bad. They're definitely a viable option for people who can't afford--or just aren't inclined--to spend too much on OB care, and the anonymity factor is a significant plus. But don't take my word for it just yet. Ask me again once I've given birth.