Questions to Ask About Labor and Delivery
Here are some questions pregnant women should consider asking their health care provider about labor and delivery:
- At what point do you recommend that I come to the hospital/birth center?
- How soon after I come to the hospital will my health care provider see me?
- How much time will the health care provider spend with me during labor?
- If I write a birth plan, will it be honored?
- How often are vaginal exams performed during labor?
- Are showering and bathing allowed during labor?
- Does this birth center/hospital allow water births? What facilities are available for water births?
- How many people are allowed to be with me during labor and delivery? How many people are allowed to be with me during a cesarean delivery?
- What is the birth center's or hospital's policy regarding other children attending the birth?
- Are eating and drinking allowed during labor?
- What laboring positions are recommended?
- Is video taping allowed?
- Can my partner cut the umbilical cord?
- How long will I be able to stay in the hospital? Can I leave earlier if I want to?
- How long does the baby need to remain in the hospital after delivery?
Here are some questions pregnant women need to consider before the going into labor:
- Is there someone available who can take you to the hospital at any time?
- How will you get in touch with that person? (Note: many hospitals and birthing centers offer a pager service that allows you to rent a pager for a few months).
- Do you have your route to the hospital planned and an alternate route if needed?
- Who will care for your children when it is time to go to the hospital?
- If you work outside the home, have you discussed your maternity leave with your supervisor?