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Dad: ‘I had to pay $39.35 to hold my baby after he was born’

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Lidia and Ryan Grassley were charged $39.35 for holding their son Samuel after he was born. (Photo courtesy of Ryan Grassley)

PROVO, Utah — A Utah father says he was charged to hold his newborn baby after his wife gave birth.

Ryan Grassley posted a photo of a bill from Utah Valley Hospital in Provo, Utah with the headline “I had to pay $39.35 to hold my baby after he was born,” to Reddit Monday. As of Tuesday afternoon, the photo had been viewed more than 2.8 million times.

The dad wrote, “The nurse let me hold the baby on my wife’s neck/chest. Even borrowed my camera to take a few pictures for us. Everyone involved in the process was great, and we had a positive experience. We just got a chuckle out of seeing that on the bill.”

Many Reddit users expressed disgust at the bill, but one user, “FiftySixer,” pointed out, “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.”