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Why do IBCLC's cost so much?

I actively work to make my practice affordable to as many people as possible. That said I know that there "sticker shock" when it comes to hearing what the cost of a single visit is. Every consultant has their own rationale for their pricing structure here is mine:

>I do not charge a travel fee on top of my fee. What you see is what you pay.

>If you are hoping to get reimbursed from your insurance company, which by the way you should because they should but that is a rant for another time, and I need to call your insurance company to set up pre-authorization for out of network or geographic gap exception coverage that is anywhere from 1 - 2+ hours of my time and I have not even addressed your lactation questions.

>If your claim gets denied I am more than happy to address the issue by reissuing the superbill, adjusting codes or calling the company. That is another 30 minutes to 2+ hours.

>Our appointment is scheduled for 90 minutes. Now sometimes baby's are exceedingly cooperative and maybe we didn't spend all that time face to face, but please see how I may have already spent quite a bit of time on arranging your care and traveling to you.

>Emails, texts, phone calls for follow up and clarification...these take time too and are not billed.

I love providing a service to new families but let's take a moment to look at the cost/value in two different fields.

My mechanic charges $50 any part of an hour plus parts and tax.

Preauthorization phone call: $50-100

Denial: $50-100

Time spent face to face: $100

Emails, texts, phone calls: N/A to mechanic

Total: $216-324, note any issue once you drive out will be this amount again.

My lawyer charges $225 an hour with a minimum of $50/ 15 minutes

Preauthorization: $225-450

Denial: $100-450

Time spent face to face: $325

Emails, texts, phone calls: $225

Total: $875 - 1450

What is the value to you for providing a unique tailored food to your infant? What is the value of my experience and education? These are questions we all have to answer as we make choices within our budgets. I am always happy to provide payment plans or reduced fees when possible or necessary. Just reach out and ask. If I can I will. What I won't do is undervalue my work, education and experience. Pa'lante.

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