We want to make your time with us as comfortable as possible. Here are some tips to help you prepare.
Preparing for Childbirth
We recommend you pack a bag several weeks prior to your delivery date. The following checklist includes items you may want to bring. Because the hospital cannot assume responsibility for personal belongings that are kept in your room, we urge you to leave valuables at home.
What to Bring:
- Driver’s license*
- Health insurance card*
- Infant car seat*—mandatory for discharge. Please familiarize yourself with installing the car seat by reading the instruction manual as well as your vehicle’s manual, and practice securing it in your car. Do not use head or neck supports unless they come with your car seat. We strongly encourage you to visit a car seat safety check prior to the delivery of your baby
- Birth plan
- A list of medications. Leave your medications at home. Your physician will order needed medications.
- Bed pillow(s) with a printed pillow case (so your pillow does not get mixed with the hospital pillows)
- Camera/phone and charging cords
- Baby book
- Toiletries for mom and support person
- Slippers, bathrobe, nightgown (We do provide gowns and disposable underwear)
- Supportive bra and breast pads (If breastfeeding, we discourage you from wearing underwire bras)
- Reading and writing materials—some women like to work on birth announcements during their stay
- Going home outfit—a safe bet is clothing you could wear when you were five months pregnant or more
- Take home outfit and blanket for baby
- Personal items to make you feel at home, such as pictures of kids or pets, a favorite book, etc.
- Appropriate night attire for support person (boxers, pajamas, etc.)
- Hair and body wash
- Baby diapers and soft wipes
- Sanitary pads
- Baby t-shirts and blankets for use during your stay
- Any medication you may need
Please note: For your safety, all body jewelry must be removed to prevent the risk of staph infection. Earrings are permitted. Do not shave your genital area prior to admittance for delivery, as it may increase your risk of infection. Nail polish should be removed, and we ask that you refrain from wearing perfume, as it can be an irritant to staff and other patients.
Preparing to Go Home
Discharge time is approximately 11 am. Women who deliver vaginally typically stay one to two days after giving birth. Women who deliver by cesarean section usually stay three to four days, barring any complications.
Before you and your baby are discharged, your nurse will review educational handouts with you, including a guide for when to call the doctor, instructions for follow-up visits, and other helpful information on caring for your baby.
You must be officially discharged by your doctor or midwife, and your baby must be discharged by the pediatrician before you can go home. Once you are discharged, we provide a wagon to help you transport your belongings to your car. One of our hospital volunteers will escort you to your car in a wheelchair. Families must have an infant car seat properly installed before leaving with their baby.
Preparing for Gynecologic Surgery
What to Bring:
- Photo identification
- Health insurance information
- Copy of any advance directive, durable power of attorney and living will documents
- List of medications with doses and frequency
- List of doctors and relatives with phone numbers and email addresses
- Robe, slippers and toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, etc.)
- Eyeglasses, hearing aids and dentures (and cases labeled with full name)
- Cane and walker (labeled with full name)
- Medical equipment, if absolutely necessary
Any medications you need will be ordered by your provider. Medications, including over-the-counter drugs, should not be brought to the hospital.
Consider how your family will be involved in your care, care planning, and decision making, and share this information with our staff. It is often helpful to identify one person who can communicate with other family members.
The best way to protect your personal property is to leave it at home. Women & Babies Hospital is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged personal items (e.g., electronic devices, clothing, money, jewelry, dentures, eyeglasses/contact lenses), even if accidentally damaged by a staff member or visitor.
Tips to help you protect valuables and other items you bring to the hospital:
- Put dentures and eyeglasses/contact lenses in protective cases when you are not using them. If you need a case for your dentures or glasses, please ask.
- Items can easily get lost or damaged when on the food tray, on the bed or in the bed linens. Please pay extra attention to your items in those areas.
- You can ask nursing staff to place valuable items in the hospital safe. The hospital is not responsible for your personal property, unless, upon your request, the nursing staff took the item to be placed in the hospital safe and it then was lost, damaged or stolen while in the hospital’s possession.
If one of your possessions is misplaced or lost, please notify your nurse immediately.
Discharge and Post-Stay Information
Planning for discharge begins when you are admitted to the hospital. Throughout your stay, our staff will work with you and your family to assess your needs and identify resources to meet those needs.