Obstetricians get paid in different ways. Some are employees of medical groups or hospitals; they are usually paid an annual salary, with annual increases (or decreases) based on productivity. Obstetricians in private practice get paid by their patients (or their insurance companies) for services performed. Obstetric care is often considered a so-called "global" service, with a set fee for prenatal care, delivery (regardless of route), and postpartum care. Perinatologists (high risk specialists) are usually consultants, as well as managing their own patients. They get paid a set fee for consultations and ultrasounds. According to CNN, the median salary of a full time US obstetrician in 2008 was $238,000. See link below for more data.