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Every birth is guided by choices but governed by circumstances. This section contains planning information and resources to help you prepare for labour, birth, and welcoming your baby into the world.
The best approach to birth planning is to discuss your hopes, wishes, and plans cooperatively with your doctor or midwife. A formal, written birth plan is not necessary but it can be a useful way to communicate your plan with your labour nurse or another doctor/midwife if your care giver is not on call.
A birth plan includes deciding where you would like to deliver your baby, at home or in your local hospital. It can include the types of comfort measures you want available (massage, warm baths, etc.) and the options you prefer for pain relief.
Things to think about:
- Who do I want to be part of my personal support team during labour and delivery, and in the first days after?
- What do I hope my birth experience will be like? How will I prepare myself for the unexpected during labour and delivery?
- What do I need to bring to the hospital?
- Depending on the time of day, how will I get to the hospital?
- Will my other children come to the hospital? Who will care for them at home or at the hospital?
- Have I purchased enough baby supplies, including a certified car seat, ahead of time?
- Do I plan to breastfeed my baby?
Questions to ask your midwife or doctor:
- What will the atmosphere and environment be like during my labour and delivery?
- Who will make up my delivery team?
- Under what circumstances might I require: induced labour, fetal monitoring, caesarean section, episiotomy, or other medical assistance?
- What are my comfort measures and pain relief options?
- How many support people (family, friends) may be present at the birth? Can my other children stay with me during delivery?
Family Doctors and Midwives in the Comox Valley perform deliveries at Comox Valley Hospital in Courtenay.
All registered midwives in the Comox Valley offer choice of birthplace to low risk people. In general, this means if you have no pre-existing or pregnancy complications, are at term (37-42 weeks), are pregnant with one baby and your baby is head down when you go into labour, you could have the choice to deliver at home. Two registered midwives attend every home birth and bring equipment and medications to handle common obstetric complications.
The Canadian Association of Midwives (CAM) and the Society of Obstetricians of Canada (SOGC) both recognize the safety of planned home birth and support a client’s right to choose their place of birth.
Helpful Home Birth Links: