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All you need to know about pregnancy and childbirth in Switzerland

Updated on November 28, 2023

Having a baby is a big event. Especially if it is your first time becoming a parent, many questions arise and there is a lot to organize. If, in addition to this, you have relocated to a new country or have the intention of moving, the circumstances and legislation in your new home must be considered. We therefore explain you everything you need to know about becoming a parent in Switzerland.

Pregnancy and work

Whether you are an employee, self-employed, unemployed or receive a loss-of-earnings allowance at the time of birth, as a mother you are entitled to claim a maternity leave of at least 14 weeks. Even if you wish to start working earlier, due to the federal law, you are prohibited to work in the first eight weeks following childbirth. During this time, you will receive 80% of the average income earned before childbirth.

As a father, you currently are not entitled to get more than one or two days of paternity leave, except your employer has special rules for that case. However, with the adoption of an initiative in September, the situation has changed. After 1st January 2021, fathers are entitled to at least two weeks’ paid paternity leave in the first six months after the childbirth.

Health insurance during pregnancy

Basic health insurance covers certain treatments after the 12th week of your pregnancy through to delivery, without you having to pay the deductible or co-payment, such as

  • check-ups with your doctor
  • ultrasounds (two or more, depending on what your gynecologist thinks is necessary)
  • group childbirth preparation courses
  • Advice sessions for breastfeeding
  • And some others

The coverage list is limited. To get a full access to the pregnancy coverage, you would need to conclude a supplementary insurance. We would be happy to explain you the possibilities and assist you in optimally preparing for this special event.

Giving birth in Switzerland

In Switzerland, you have a range of possible birth venues to choose from.

  1. You can have your baby in a hospital. Besides natural birth, you can also choose to have a caesarean section. In your basic health insurance, only a stay in the general ward (up to 6 people in one room, normally 2 after birth) in a hospital in your canton of residence is covered.
  2. Birth houses are centers specifically for expectant parents, where several midwifes care for women during birth.
  3. Another possibility is to give birth at home where you know the surroundings, feel comfortable and protected. Requirements for birthing at home with the assistance of a midwife are that there were no complications during pregnancy and the baby is born around due date.

Please note that there is an option to conclude supplementary insurances which give you the access to better hospitalisation circumstances such as single room in every Swiss and private hospital and a free choice of doctor. We would be happy to explain you the options and take care of your needs in a personal consultation.

Health insurance for your baby

It’s important to conclude the health insurance for your baby before birth. Acceptance for basic insurance is unconditionally guaranteed. Health insurance companies cannot refuse to accept your child. For supplementary insurances, this is not the case, especially if you apply after birth. We therefore recommend concluding a health insurance two or three months before birth date. Insurers then will usually accept the application for both basic and supplementary coverage. There are different types of coverages for supplementary insurances. After giving birth, you can fill in an additional declaration and get the best coverage for your new-born.  

Would you like to get the best coverage for your baby? We take care of this for you. Just get in touch with us, and we happily assist you in finding the optimal solution for you and your new family member.

Evgeniy Timoshenko

Do you have any questions? Get in touch with me.

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