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Maternity services in New Zealand are free for New Zealand residents and other eligible women.
When you are pregnant you can choose a Lead Maternity Carer (LMC) to provide and coordinate the majority of your maternity care. Visit Services provided by your Lead Maternity Carer to find out more.
Your LMC will work with the staff in maternity hospitals and specialist services if you need any extra care for complications you may experience.
Am I entitled to free maternity care?
If you’re a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident, or are eligible in another way, you’ll receive free care.
- Read the Guide to eligibility for publicly funded health services to see if you’re covered.
- If you’re not eligible but your partner is, you may still be able to receive free care – visit Who is eligible for publicly funded maternity services? for more information.
- If you’re eligible, your baby will be able to receive free care if born in New Zealand.
In this section
- Your Lead Maternity Carer (LMC) is there to provide maternity care and support you through pregnancy, labour and the first weeks of your child’s life. Most LMCs are midwives, though doctors and obstetricians may also be LMCs. Read more
- A guide to the services your Lead Maternity Carer will provide at each stage of pregnancy, labour, birth and the first weeks of your baby’s life. Read more
- You can choose where to give birth to your baby, either at home or in a small maternity unit (primary maternity facility) or larger maternity hospital (secondary or tertiary maternity facility). Find out about the different facility types. Read more
- You can choose where to give birth to your baby – either at home or in a small maternity unit or larger maternity hospital. Find out about the different facilities available in your area. Read more
- There are four pregnancy and newborn screenings available free in New Zealand. You can have screenings for HIV and Down syndrome during pregnancy, and when your baby is born, they can receive metabolic and hearing screening. Read more
- The 0800 Mum2Be maternity helpline can provide you with contact details for lead maternity carers in your area. Find out when to call the helpline, and who else to contact with your maternity-related questions. Read more
- Find out about your rights when it comes to maternity care, and what to do if you find it difficult to talk to your health worker or are unhappy with your maternity care. Read more
Your Pregnancy/Tō Hapūtanga
Available on HealthEd.
New Zealand College of Midwives
The professional organisation for New Zealand midwives.
Mothers and Midwives Association
An Auckland-based maternity group whose website includes lots of information to help you plan your maternity care.
Maternity Services Consumer Council
Information on how maternity care is provided in New Zealand and what your options are.
Health Improvement and Innovation Resource Centre
Maternity Quality and Safety