New dad was charged $39.35 by hospital to hold his own baby

One father took to Reddit to share a rather outrageous charge he and his wife received after welcoming their new son into the world, and now the internet doesn't know whether to laugh, cry or just seriously question the American health care system.

Ryan Grassley posted a photo of the itemized hospital bill his family received from Utah Valley Hospital in Provo, Utah, for his wife's Cesarean birth, which totaled over $13,000 and likely didn't come as a shock to them.

However, one line item in particular stood out -- $39.35 for "skin to skin contact."

I had to pay $39.35 to hold my baby after he was born.

According to Grassley, almost 40 bucks were added to the bill just so he could hold his baby right after he was born.

In a subsequent comment, he explained, "The nurse let me hold the baby on my wife's neck/chest. Even borrowed my camera to take a few pictures for us."

What Grassley didn't expect was to be billed for that service.

Another Reddit user, who identifies as a labor and delivery nurse, wrote that the charge isn't exactly just for holding the baby.

"As a labor and delivery nurse, I can kind of explain this. I didn't know that hospitals charged for it, but doing 'skin to skin' in the operating room requires an additional staff member to be present just to watch the baby. We used to take all babies to the nursery once the NICU team made sure everything was okay. "Skin to skin" in the OR is a relatively new thing and requires a second Labor and Delivery RN to come in to the OR and make sure the baby is safe."

Luckily, the Grassley family had a good sense of humor about the entire situation.

"Everyone involved in the process was great, and we had a positive experience," he wrote. "We just got a chuckle out of seeing that on the bill."

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