The quality of care in the United States can vary a lot depending on the state a person gives birth and the hospital's facilities, and it's especially important to consider in the age of Covid-19.
So, where is the best place in America to give birth?
A recent Wallethub survey ranked the 50 states and Washington D.C. based on four categories relating to giving birth and childrearing: cost (such as the cost of delivering a baby, hiring a nanny and getting health insurance); health care (which considers everything from positive Covid-19 test rates to infant and mortality rates and hospital quality); baby-friendliness (including the number of moms in a state and the quality of parental-leave policies) and family-friendliness (like education and safety).
According to these metrics, the best state in which to have a baby in 2020 is Massachusetts. Thanks to its high scores in health care and family-friendliness, the Bay State came in first place with an overall score of 68.81 out of a possible 100. (In 2019, Massachusetts took second place overall.)
Minnesota is the second-best state in which to have a baby, and the most family-friendly, according to Wallethub's data.
North Dakota ranked the most affordable state to deliver a baby, coming in third place overall. And cost is a big factor: Studies suggest that the average out of pocket cost for maternity care (which includes pregnancy, delivery and three months of postpartum care) in the United States is $4,500.
To get the best-ranked healthcare for baby, head to Vermont, which had an overall score of 64.5, according to the survey. The Green Mountain State has 1,478 total cases of Covid-19 as of Wednesday, according to the Vermont Department of Health.
Alabama, on the other hand, had the worst overall score in the survey, ranking in last place for baby-friendliness, and near-last for health care.
The 10 best states to have a baby:
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- New Hampshire
- District of Columbia
The worst states to have a baby:
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
(1 = the worst)
Curious how your state stacks up? See the full survey results here.
Check out: The best credit cards of 2020 could earn you over $1,000 in 5 years