Women who have private health insurance or who are prepared to pay for this service themselves, are able to receive their antenatal, birth and postnatal care as a private patient either with an obstetrician in a private hospital, in a public hospital or with a private practise midwife.
Before deciding on the care you would like to receive, you should first check that your health insurance policy includes obstetric care and what services are covered.
You may be able to attend a public hospital as a private patient. As a private patient you may receive extra benefits including choice of doctor. To find out if this option is available, contact your local hospital for more information.
As a private patient you are able to choose the doctor and hospital you would prefer to provide your care. You will normally have antenatal appointments with an obstetrician in either his/her private rooms or in some cases at a hospital antenatal clinic. You should ensure that your obstetrician has admitting rights at the hospital you prefer to birth at.
You can find contact details for obstetricians from your GP, the private hospital you wish to deliver at or from the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG) website.
For a list of private maternity hospitals in WA click here
Private practise midwives are practising midwives who are not linked to a hospital or the Community Midwifery Program. Private practise midwives provide antenatal, birth and postnatal care to low risk, healthy women in their own homes. In choosing this option you will normally see the same midwife or group of midwives for all your care.
From November 2010, eligible midwives will be able to access the Medicare benefit scheme. This means that if you see a midwife in private practice who is an eligible midwife you will be able to claim the Medicare rebate for that visit. The midwife will also be able to write prescriptions for you for certain medications. You will need to discuss with the midwife whether or not they are endorsed as eligible in order to receive the rebate.
More information and details on how to find a private practise midwife can be found on the links below.
Australian College of Midwives
Australian Society of Independent Midwives
Independent Midwife Centre
80 Canning Hwy
Ph: (08) 9319 8043